Rise in Covid-19 cases seen in madrasah clusters

by NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK/ pic by BERNAMA

THE rate of positive Covid-19 cases among madrasah clusters has increased to 5.1% versus 4.4% recorded last week.

Health DG Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the upward trend is concerning as it shows the infectiousness of the cluster within itself has increased.

“To date, 19,209 students, teachers and staff have been identified from 370 madrasah and tahfiz centres nationwide.

“Out of the total population, 12,384 samples were tested (64.5%) and the results showed 635 positive cases, 10,755 negative and 994 currently pending,” he said at the Covid-19 updates briefing yesterday.

He said out of the Covid-19 screening run by the Ministry of Health, it was found that 96 out of 635 individuals, who were found positive with Covid-19, had no symptoms in relation to their respiratory systems.

“This can lead to a wider transmission of Covid-19 among their family members and local community, given that prevention methods are not being taken,” he said.

Dr Noor Hisham said there are recommendations for students, who have returned home to their parents or guardians, to inform the District Health Office, local clinic or hospital offering screening to conduct their Covid-19 tests.

“Students who have not returned should remain within the madrasah or tahfiz centres and inform the relevant parties to undergo screening, while the madrasah administrators should inform relevant parties to relay information and updates regarding its students or staff,” he said.

Meanwhile, yesterday, it was found that four out of six madrasah clusters have been considered as the sub-cluster to the Sri Petaling tabligh gathering, while the remaining two are still under investigation.

The Solok Duku Madrasah has been identified as the newest cluster, with 107 students, teachers and family members screened, where two positive cases were found among 35 students, while two positive cases were found among 62 family members of the centre’s teachers, staff and students.

Meanwhile, no positive cases were found among the 10 teachers and staff tested.

Among all the madrasah clusters, none have recorded new cases except for the Sungai Salan Madrasah, which added three more cases, totalling up to 84. Sungai Lui Madrasah is still recording the highest number of cases at 172.

Forty new positive cases were recorded yesterday, where 31 cases are not locals, adding up to the cumulative active cases to 1,356 (as at press time), including the 16 patients who are being treated in the intensive care unit and four requiring respiratory aid.

Seventy patients have also recovered and were discharged from their respective health facilities, totalling the number of recovered and discharged cases to 5,351 (as at press time).

The total number of Covid-19 cases in Malaysia, to date, has increased to 6,819 (at press time).

Another death was reported involving a 39-year-old man who was involved in an accident earlier in the year.