Other states urged to adopt Bintulu-style SOPs

KUCHING: The measures being implemented in Bintulu to reduce the spread of Covid-19 should serve as an example to other states in Malaysia, said Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing.

“I strongly encourage other states to adopt our measures. After Bintulu’s daily confirmed cases numbers soared to three digits, we insisted on implementing our own set of stricter standard operating procedures (SOPs).

“This included lockdowns of red zones and ramping up the number of tests. At one point, we were testing more than 6,000 people in a single day, which is still a record in the district,” added the Bintulu MP.

“This type of mass scale testing continues to this day, with an average of testing 2,000 people daily. Finally, we have been able to flatten the curve of daily confirmed cases to single digits,” he said in a statement on Sunday (July 11).

Tiong said periodic reviews and adjustments to the measures to contain Covid-19 were necessary for Bintulu.

“Although my opinion at the time was not taken seriously in Parliament and was even condemned, we insisted on implementing comprehensive and strict prevention measures in Bintulu and we were rewarded with signs of declining transmissions”.

The MP said those infected must be isolated and lockdown hit places must be guarded by authorities as instances where quarantined individuals had escaped from the barbed wire fences should not happen.

“One of the key points in Bintulu’s anti-Covid-19 measures is to upgrade the existing medical equipment there to prepare for the worst-case scenario of the pandemic.

“Regardless of our resources compared to the federal government’s, we are still constantly raising funds to purchase more medical equipment and were even able to set up two virus testing laboratories,” he said.

The MP said he had repeatedly urged that the National Security Council (NSC) and the Ministry of Health not to let red tape get in the way of fighting the pandemic.

“They must abandon bureaucracy and expedite the use of funds to help fight the pandemic’s life-threatening issues and aim for a fast and sharp resolution to Covid-19,” he said.