Dr Annuar dismisses claims ‘not enough’ PCR tests carried out in Sibu

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SIBU, Feb 17: This town has not slacked in the PCR testing of its 360,000 people.

Assistant Minister of Housing and Local Government, Dr Annuar Rapaee in his Facebook live chat today quashed allegations that the town had not done enough Covid-19 testing on its population.

He said a total of 51,640 tests had been conducted so far.

“If we based on a population of one million people, we have done 143,000 tests. If we compared with other countries, we are not far behind them including Singapore and some European countries,” he said.

According to the Nangka assemblyman, the town area had completed 35,665 tests (excluding longhouse) done since Pasai Cluster was detected on Jan 8, 1,428 of them were positive cases, 32,091 negative and another 2,156 whose results were still pending.

On a daily average 1,400 tests were conducted.

“The parameter to determine whether we have done enough test is the positivity rate. According to WHO, if the positivity rate is not less than 5%, it means that we have not achieved enough test. Of the 35,665 done, we have achieved 4.2%. This shows that we have fulfilled the quota,” he said.

The positive rate is a good metric for how adequately countries are testing because it indicates the level of testing relative to the size of the outbreak. To be able to properly monitor and control the spread of the virus, countries with more widespread outbreaks need to do more testing.

As there are still a number of Sibu Jaya flats residents not undergoing swab test yet, Dr Annuar urged them to do so.

“Nobody can force you to have a swab test. But for your safety especially those in the lockdown area, are advised to do so either tomorrow or the day after as we don’t want to miss anybody,”he said.

The test can be done at Sibu Jaya Health Clinic and all residents have to do two tests.

On the 102 cases recorded in Sibu today, he said the majority came from Sibu Jaya flat with 77 cases.

“70% of the total cases were from the lockdown area from the Sibu Jaya flats,” he said.

He also answered a query on the distribution of food aid to residents of the flats.

“The distribution of the food aid was supposed to have taken place today but it has been changed to Friday as certain items were not available yet,” he explained. -DayakDaily