Don’t be complacent, warns health director

Dr Chin Zin Hing

KUCHING: The daily Covid-19 cases in the state remained on an upward trend with an R-naught (Rt) value of 0.19 as of May 15, said State Health Department Director Dr Chin Zin Hing.

He advised the public not to be complacent and to comply strictly with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) set by the State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC).

“The Covid-19 mutation virus from India, namely B.1.517.2, which was reported in Malaysia on May 2 this year, has yet to enter Sarawak. But if this variant   enters, it will paralyse the health services in the state quickly.

“That is why every Sarawakian is advised to continue adhering to the SOPs set to curb the pandemic and protect every life in Sarawak,” he explained.

He added that the Sarawak State Health Department fully supported the extension of conditional movement control order (CMCO) in the state.

Dr Chin also revealed that since Feb 13 this year, the state had recorded over 100 Covid-19 cases daily while there were 81 active clusters throughout Sarawak on Sunday (May 16) compared to only 16 active clusters in mid Feb.

“Most of these clusters occurred due to the mass gatherings such as weddings, birthday parties and social activities which were avoidable.

“In addition, some of the clusters were from workplaces, funerals, longhouses and educational institutions that failed to comply with the existing SOPs.

“Fatalities due to the Covid-19 have also increased since Feb 2021,” he added.

Dr Chin said that 71 Covid-19 cases were still in critical conditions in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) ward including 26 cases requiring respiratory assistance.

“The capacity of the ICU beds in the state is currently at a critical level, especially in the Sibu Hospital and the Kapit Hospital.

“For additional information, so far, only the government hospitals in Sarawak can only provide care services for critically ill patients infected by the Covid-19 virus,” he said.