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Health deputy director-general (public health) Dr Chong Chee Kheong said today that the spike in Covid-19 cases in the Klang Valley was due to eased restrictions.
This comes as Malaysia reported a record 20,596 infections yesterday. More than half (10,712) were in the Klang Valley.
Speaking during a press conference for selected media today, Chong listed three factors for the worsening crisis.
The first was a looser movement control order (MCO).
“This rising trend is the cumulative effect of something that happened a month ago because you have to talk about the incubation period and also the fact that the virus is in our community.
“So a month ago we saw the easing of the MCO 3.0 and at the same time, the economic sector was also eased to help the people continue with their livelihoods,” he said.
On July 17, the enhanced MCO over most of Selangor was lifted despite soaring cases.
On July 7, the International Trade and Industry Ministry had allowed more manufacturing sectors in the state to operate.
According to Chong, the second and third reasons were the July 20 Hari Raya Aidiladha celebrations and the Delta variant.
“We also have the event of (a) festival where people move around within states and some of them even crossed the state borders.
“So this effect is now seen two weeks later and four weeks later as it accumulates.
“And also the fact that we are now seeing a more dominant Delta strain which is more transmissible and aggressive. So these factors together have caused a rise in cases,” he explained.
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Chong, who leads the Health Ministry’s Greater Klang Valley Special Task Force, said more beds and equipment have been allocated to help deal with the cases.
However, he said more needed to be done to bring down the high number of brought-in-dead cases.
Hospitals are full
Meanwhile, Selangor health director Dr Sha’ari Ngadiman also reported on the situation of public hospitals in the state.
He said 85 percent or more of beds at all four full Covid-19 hospitals were occupied as of Aug 5.
Intensive care unit (ICU) beds at Ampang Hospital and Serdang Hospital were at full capacity while those at Sungai Buloh Hospital (96 percent) and Selayang Hospital (96 percent) were almost there.
This was despite recent reinforcements for beds, ICU beds and oxygen ports.