Dr Yii: Govt must provide industry-specific SOP and subsidised self-testing kits

Dr Kelvin Yii

KUCHING, June 27: The government must at least come up with industry-specific standard operating procedure (SOP) and provide subsidised self-testing kits for industries to screen their employees weekly.

Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii viewed the government must have continuous engagement with all stakeholders and industries through relevant ministries to sort out necessary arrangements and even allow each industry to propose their own SOP while they resume operations.

“This is to make sure that the SOPs are targetted, clear and avoid illogical SOP like we see during this current FMCO (Full Movement Control Order). No one knows better the conditions on the ground than the industry players themselves and they must be allowed to give input and propose suitable SOP with proper guidance from the Ministry of Health (MOH).

“They must incorporate the latest knowledge of the virus into the SOP including more emphasis on proper ventilation to reduce airborne transmission, rather than the current emphasis on surface decontamination,” he said.

On the self-testing kits, he opined that the government must find ways to subsidise them for all industries to make it affordable for industries to screen their employees on a weekly basis to properly cut down workplace and factory clusters.

Dr Yii said this would be cheaper in a long run for the industry players than the economic costs for closing down whenever there is a cluster.

“This is where the government must facilitate the procurement of such test kits to make sure it is reliable, sensitive and affordable especially when purchased in bulk.

“Faster test kits such as breathalysers approved in Singapore that take about one to two minutes to produce the results and do not involve swabbing must be explored,” he said in a statement today.

Adding on, he said almost all industries including the airport, seaport, office buildings, malls, hospitals, factories and educational institutions can use these kits to screen individuals in an effective way.

“The facts are clear. In the near to medium-term, the public will have to coexist with Covid-19 and it is incumbent on the Malaysian government to look into strategies to restart economic activities in a safe, controlled and sustainable manner while checking on the Covid-19 spread.

“They cannot continue to rely on lockdowns and MCOs which have huge economic costs at the expense of the livelihood and mental health of the people,” he added. — DayakDaily