Ensure pandemic does not spiral out of control

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KUCHING: The Health Ministry must act aggressively to prevent the Covid-19 pandemic from spiralling out of control.

Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) president Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing said the public health authority has to activate its emergency measures to remedy the limited hospital beds and review its advice to the National Security Council (NSC).

“The relevant authorities must also seek immediate help from private medical experts and infectious diseases experts from local universities or those abroad including China, with their greater experience in viral epidemic responses.”

Tiong said the country’s numerous indoor sports centres should be used as emergency shelters and quarantine centres for intensive treatments.

He said large group of infected patients at dormitories or construction sites must be locked down and contained immediately, adding that potential super spreaders should not be allowed to roam free.

He pointed out that the ministry has been repeatedly urged to engage the experience and expertise of China’s health experts and had continued to refuse to do so.

“As of January 7, the number of confirmed cases has reached 124,465, with 521 deaths. In the global pandemic prevention rankings, we are 71st below Zimbabwe. Are we proud of this excellent ranking?” he asked.

Tiong also lamented the decision to not arrange for confirmed cases to be admitted to the hospital for treatment, which he viewed as being ‘extremely unacceptable’.

“It has gotten to a point where the authorities are considering bringing back the movement control order (MCO) which would dismay the public even more.

“What the people deserve is a well-planned and well-communicated pandemic prevention and recovery plan,” he said.