The Malaysian Health Coalition (MHC) understands and supports the government’s decision to transition into the recovery phase of the movement control order (RMCO). The gradual reopening of public life in Malaysia must rely on appropriate guidance from all areas of government and the Ministry of Health. We must remain vigilant until a vaccine for Covid-19 is available.
A group of academics from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya have developed a guideline for Return to Work after the Movement Control Order (MCO) for COVID-19 infection. The guide covers commonly asked questions such as the need to test employees returning to work after the Movement Control Order (MCO) for COVID-19 infection, available testing methods and how to protect employees and avoid a COVID-19 outbreak at the workplace including the use of technology.
The full extent of COVID-19’s impact on our health system and people with NCDs remains to be seen. However, there is clear evidence of its disruption to other areas of healthcare as well as its disproportionately harmful effects on people with NCDs. The 2019 NHMS report is a wake-up call for Malaysians to take urgent action for our own future health. As such, the government must refocus our health system and develop health policies to address both COVID-19 and NCD care in the immediate future.
In response to the fight against COVID-19, U.S. Department of State’s Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) Initiative for activities in Malaysia in partnership with the Malaysia Biotechnology Students’ Association (MYBIOSA) and several other NGOs, has initiated “function of Science” to mobilize multiple free hand sanitizer production facilities in university laboratories across Malaysia.
Childcare for healthcare workers should be prioritised, as reflected in the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. The CDC states that if childcare centres cannot fulfil necessary physical distancing measures for all children, childcare centres should “consider serving only the children of healthcare workers and first responders”. This is in stark contrast with the SOP by KPWKM which states that the best arrangement for children of HCWs is at-home care.
Malaysia must tackle this new crisis swiftly and ensure that measures taken to prevent spread within the depots are effective, and that there will be no spillage of cases into the community. To prevent over-crowding, Immigration should not detain more undocumented migrants at this stage of the crisis. Social distancing is challenging to practice but it is the cornerstone of reducing transmission of COVID-19.
This guide (SOP) aims to help offer ideas and initiatives that could be taken when we reopen schools. Teachers need to work very closely with parents and students; parents and children can play an important role. Students should be involved and provided a clear understanding of the situation. Younger students and those with learning disabilities may require reinforced training with a focus on visual tools. Support between schools will also be critical.
Like COVID-19, around 75% of new infectious diseases are zoonotic. Some experts believe climate change may be putting humans in closer contact with animals. While COVID-19 and climate change are real but different health emergencies, both are of environmental origin and they point to a common denominator - destructive environmental practices ultimately affect our health.
Each day, we are bombarded by misinformation on COVID-19, especially on social media. This situation makes it difficult for users to distinguish between fact and fake news. The World Health Organization (WHO) has called this an "infodemic" describing it as more dangerous than coronavirus pandemic. To address these issues, the Science Media Centre (SMC) Malaysia in collaboration with the Medical Mythbusters Malaysia hosted a webinar recently to discuss the impact of the fake news on the COVID-19 pandemic.
General Practitioners (GP) in the private sector plays an important role in the delivery of healthcare for the public. It supplements the primary healthcare services offered in the public sector. Most of the GP practices in Malaysia, either group or individual are located in shop lots. The usual practice in these clinics is to use split airconditioning units for climate control. Here are some simple measures that the GP can take to reduce the risk of transmission.