We must not be complacent about the threat of the 5th Wave in Malaysia, especially due to the Delta variant. Our pandemic is barely under any control despite 4 weeks of a lockdown. We need to support each other and see the nation through these next few difficult months.
Recently, Malaysia has been recording an increased number of COVID-19 cases categorised by either the Variant of Concern (VOC) or Variant of Interest (VOI). VOCs or VOIs are mutant forms of the COVID virus (SARS-CoV-2), which are more virulent and infectious than its predecessor Wuhan strain. Dr Liyana explains the difference between VOI and VOCs in Malaysia.
The 3rd iteration of the Movement Control Order (MCO) has just been intensified. It is as such an opportune time for us to take cognizance of our control measures so far and in doing so realign our response measures to COVID-19. Dr Dhesi BR in his opinion piece presents six key priority areas within which said realignment must take place.
We need to be science based with our daily SOPs, rather than resort to harsh measures. Heftier fines, extended MCOs, increased public blaming are counterproductive and also harmful to the poor and those that have lost their livelihood. We have to walk this fine balance between harm from Covid-19 and destroying lives from tight SOPs.
Many individuals and groups have voiced suggestions to manage our raging COVID-19 pandemic in Malaysia. However, few appear to have been considered. Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS summarised five key measures critically needed to take to help put out the COVID-19 raging fire in our nation.
Following reports of a new strain of the coronavirus that is more infectious circulating in parts of the UK, British Health Secretary Matt Hancock on Sunday (20 Dec) said that the government has imposed a strict Christmas lockdown in London and southeast England.
This year, the Mahathir Science Award – the most prestigious science award for tropical sciences was presented to Professor Sir Alimuddin Zumla of University College London, in recognition of his exceptional, globally acknowledged research in infectious diseases which is relevant to the development and enhancement of health policy.
The Academy of Medicine of Malaysia (AMM) urged the government to enforce mandatory quarantine in designated quarantine centres for Sabah returnees. It has been proven in other countries, such as China and Singapore where compliance rates are high, that home quarantines are not as effective in curbing spread.
Viral hepatitis is a communicable disease that can cause serious liver damage and liver cancer. Deaths from viral hepatitis, the majority (96%) are due to hepatitis B and C, are rising worldwide compared to the downward trend for the other three most common causes of communicable diseases. However, hepatitis is preventable, treatable, and for Hepatitis C, curable with timely treatment.
These interim trial results show that hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir/ritonavir produce little or no reduction in the mortality of hospitalized COVID-19 patients when compared to standard of care. Solidarity trial investigators will interrupt the trials with immediate effect.