All-time high again with 17,405 new cases

The number of fatalities has slightly decreased with 143 cases reported in the last 24-hour

by TMR / pic by TMR FILE

MALAYSIA has hit yet another record in Covid-19 cases yesterday with 17,405 new cases. The previous record was last Sunday’s 17,045 cases.

This brought the cumulative positive cases to over 1.06 million since the pandemic broke out in the country early last year, with current active ones standing at 175,113.

Some 1,016 were admitted into the intensive care unit (ICU) with 529 requiring respiratory aid.

Health DG Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said Selangor again topped the list with 7,171 cases, followed by Kuala Lumpur (2,880), Kedah (1,112), Sabah (913) and Negri Sembilan (863).

Johor had 767 cases, Penang (760), Kelantan (532), Melaka (531), Terengganu (490), Sarawak (464), Pahang (429), Perak (406), Putrajaya (68), Labuan (16) and Perlis (3).

There were 143 Covid-19 deaths, bringing the total fatalities to 8,551. Meanwhile, 12,373 people recovered yesterday, bringing the number of total recoveries to 877,812.

On the other hand, the Greater Klang Valley (GKV) Special Task Force commander Datuk Dr Chong Chee Kheong said the emergence of the Delta variant and the presence of many asymptomatic individuals who are spreading the virus have resulted in the spike of Covid-19 cases in the GKV.

Dr Chong said despite the vaccination ramp-up, the cases were still increasing because the protection offered by the vaccine takes time to fully develop.

“The vaccine effectiveness is best two weeks after the second dose, so this takes time. The Delta variant that has a high infectivity rate is also an important contributor to the spike in cases.

“Additionally, we recognise, from the experience and data of nations with high vaccination rates, that infections can still occur due to the Delta variant although the hospitalisation and severe infections are significantly reduced,” he said in a statement yesterday.

To stem the pandemic in the GKV, Dr Chong said the task force has put in place various strategic measures to optimise care services, reduce virus transmission and support the community and health staff.

Some of the key initiatives include increasing the bed capacity, ICU care, oxygen supply, manpower deployment and use of volunteers, as well as strengthening Covid-19 Assessment Centres (CAC) by offering a virtual CAC for the asymptomatic and mildly symptomatic patients and enhanced home monitoring management.

“We hope to offer more RTK-Ag tests to health clinics and general practitioners via sales of Medical Device Authority approved test kits to allow for wider testing,” he said.

Dr Chong also advised individuals in the GKV with symptoms to get tested, and once confirmed positive, to home-isolate and do self-monitoring frequently through the MySejahtera application.

“Our staff will contact those that are red-flagged as high risk and ask them to go to the nearest CAC or hospital,” he said.

He added that with self-testing and RTK-Ag use, cases are expected to rise in the next few days.

“But do not be alarmed by this; we need to identify as many cases as possible to reduce transmission in the community.

“As more of these positive cases and their contacts are isolated and quarantined, cases will start to gradually come down in the weeks to come,” he said.

Once that happens, Dr Chong said the testing will be re-strategised to ensure effective detection of cases for isolation and monitoring.

Separately, Senior Foreign Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein announced that 39 localities in Sabah, Kelantan and Pahang will be placed under the Enhanced Movement Control Order (EMCO) from tomorrow until Aug 12 while the EMCO at Blok Angsana and Blok Sumboisumboi, Kampung Seberang Benoni in Papar, Sabah, which was scheduled to end today, will be extended to Aug 12.

The EMCO in Sabah involving Blok 2, Blok 6 and Blok 9 PPR Taman Mesra in Sandakan; Kampung Melamam, Sipitang and Kampung Landung Ayang, Kudat ends today as scheduled while EMCO in Kampung Lubak, Beaufort ended yesterday, earlier than scheduled.

Meanwhile, Hishammuddin said 52 premises comprising 10 factories, 39 business outlets and three construction sites were ordered to shut immediately on Tuesday for violating the standard operating procedures.