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By Karen Bong
KUCHING, Aug 21: Another 1,000 isolation beds will be added to increase the existing capacity of 2,997 beds at the Quarantine and Low-Risk Treatment Centres (PKRCs) in Kuching in preparation for more Category 1 and 2 Covid-19 patients.
Minister for Local Government and Housing Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian emphasised that the State health authorities have been working hard on getting the extra beds ready to provide for no or mild symptoms Covid-19 patients who accounted for 99.9 per cent of cases in Sarawak.
Despite the fact that high immunisation has effectively and sharply reduced the number of serious cases, he however warned that “there is a limit especially on medical manpower soon” if cases continue to rise.
With Sarawak’s Covid-19 cases bursting past the 2,000-mark for the first time since March 2020 with an all-time high of 2,548 cases yesterday, Dr Sim pointed out that greater Kuching accounted for 85 per cent of the total cases with the surge largely due to the Delta variant.
“The number is a reflection of the total local community transmission of Delta variant in the last 14 days.
“Whatever we do now, tangible results can only be seen in the next 14 days,” he shared in his social media post today.
Dr Sim, who is State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) advisor, however emphasised that it is evident that the high immunisation rate of 83 per cent achieved in Sarawak has reduced severe cases, deaths and hospitalisations as compared to Sabah with low vaccination rate of 26.9 per cent of population fully vaccinated.
“Though Sabah and Sarawak both had more than 2,500 cases yesterday, Sabah has 20 per cent cases in Category 3-5 with 17 deaths, while Sarawak has 0.04 per cent in Category 3-5 with no death and 99.9 per cent cases in Category 1-2.
“Vaccination allows us to live with Covid-19 and to reopen our economic and social sectors safely as Covid-19 will become endemic, meaning it will be in our community for a while,” he explained.
Dr Sim, thus, reminded that it is important to get as many eligible adults vaccinated in Sarawak and hopefully to start vaccination for those aged between 15 and 17 years next week.
“Everyone needs to be on highest alert (as cases rise), come together in solidarity, support each other but not to panic, politicking, and mislead the community with fake news,” he advised. — DayakDaily