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Published: Monday December 30, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Monday December 30, 2013 MYT 6:35:29 AM

TB spread due to labour influx

LABUAN: The influx of foreign workers has led to the spread of tuberculosis in the country.

About 18,000 cases were reported in 2010, rising to 20,000 in 2011 with 1,600 deaths.

Deputy Health Minister Datuk Dr Hilmi Yahaya said foreign workers wishing to work in this country are now required to undergo health screening.

He said of the 30,000 foreign workers who had been brought into the country, 20,000 had failed the health screening carried out by his ministry.

“Foreign workers must undergo two health screenings, one in the country of their origin and the other in Malaysia, before they are issued with the working visa here,” he said yesterday.

Dr Hilmi also said that there were foreign workers who had passed the health screening carried out in the country of their origin but failed the test here.

Most of these workers were from Indonesia, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar and the Philippines. Those who failed the health screening here would be repatriated home.

On another matter, Dr Hilmi said the Health and Education ministries are working together to produce more specialist doctors to overcome the shortage of such experts.

He said training and scholarships had been offered to young doctors keen to improve various fields of medical studies.

“There is a rise in the number of applications for the programmes and scholarships each year,” he said.

This year, 1,000 scholarships were offered for medical programmes at local and foreign universities, compared with 800 last year. — Bernama

Tags / Keywords: Health, Health screening, foreign workers, tuberculosis

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