Urgent contact tracing needed

KUCHING: The health authorities are urged to conduct contact tracing in view of the recent spike in Covid-19 cases.

Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian said through contact tracing, PCR testing and isolation, it would prevent the recent local transmission from clustering.

“Panic doesn’t help, anger doesn’t help, finger pointing doesn’t help and politics doesn’t help. Please help to play your role and do your part. We need your help to protect Sarawak, our families and our friends,” he said.

He said this in a Facebook post on Friday in response to eight new cases recorded in the state. Of the eight cases, seven were local transmissions in Kuching, Meradong and Bintulu.

He said for the cases in Kuching, the cases involved young patients who were mobile with extensive social and business networking in Kuching.

“They were symptomatic with low Ct (cycle threshold) value — which is high infectious and will need help from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak to do genetic sequencing to look for variant.

“It is understood that the cases worked in broadband fitting service, online delivery service and insurance.

“They may have been unknowingly infected by people they have come in contact due to the nature of their work and may have passed on the virus,” he said.

Dr Sim urged those who were potentially exposed to come forward to be PCR tested at Petra Jaya Health Clinic that offers free testing for those related to the Covid-19 exposure or private hospitals.

“Kuching divisional Health Office in the past has immediately conducted contact tracing and is ready for Active Case Detection (ACD). 

“I am sure that the divisional Health Office in Bintulu had started immediate contact tracing and testing to the local transmission in Samalaju, Bintulu,” he said.