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By Ling Hui
KUCHING, Sept 29: A total of 1,006 oxygen cylinders for Sarawak as promised by Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin arrived on schedule in Kuching yesterday from Kuala Lumpur, delivered by the Royal Malaysian Air Force (TUDM).
State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) advisor Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian said the equipment is to be distributed to all peripheral hospitals in Sarawak as part of preparation to increase hospital capacity in case of any surge in severe Delta variant cases.
While Sarawak, like the rest of Malaysia, Singapore and UK, is transitioning into the endemic phase, he said the State will need to be suited up with two important components namely preparations inside and outside hospitals.
“Hospital phase (is for) building up capacity of hospitals in case of any surge of Categories 3, 4 (oxygen) and 5 (ventilator) who need hospital beds.
“With Delta, we must prepare for the worst but work for the best (including) booster doses, potential for advance purchase agreement (APA) for new monoclonal antibody drugs, ICU (Intensive Care Unit) monitors, oxygen points, oxygen cylinders, ventilators, medical and nursing staff,” he explained in a social media post last night (Sept 28).
As for preparations outside of hospitals, Dr Sim highlighted regular risk assessment on daily activities, testing using saliva RTK-Ag kits, and self-monitoring for danger signs.
That also included self-isolation at home following close proximity exposure to Covid-19 cases or being positive with the virus in Categories 1 or 2 themselves.
“(Secondly, there are the) non-pharmaceutical and public health measures that can be listed in SOP (standard operating procedure) such as double facemask, physical distancing, social distancing (any social or family gathering, whether in private or public places), fresh airflow ventilation of public places, hand washing and sanitising (and so forth).”
Dr Sim, who is also Minister for Local Government and Housing, listed vaccination as the third leg of the outside hospital phase where he said all Sarawakians need to play their role and do their part for everyone to live with the virus so that economy could gradually reopen in a safer way.
“Together, we shall overcome Covid-19,” he added. — DayakDaily