Johor records increase in respiratory infection cases

JOHOR BARU: Johor recorded an increase in cases of respiratory infections, with 1,319 cases as of the 27th epidemiological week (ME27) compared to 574 in the same period last year.

State Health and Unit Committee chairman Ling Tian Soon said that the number of outbreak clusters reported as of ME27 also showed an increase with 15 clusters compared to eight clusters in the same period last year.

“Most of the clusters reported involve educational institutions; 12, which is 80%," he said in a statement.

Ling said there has been an increase in the trend of cases and outbreaks of respiratory tract infections, namely influenza-like-illness (ILI) and upper respiratory tract illness (URTI) in the state.

He said the monitoring carried out by the Johor Health Department (JKNJ) on ILI and URTI infections found that the situation was still under control, although several clusters were detected involving boarding schools.

“The public is advised to take preventive measures by practicing high levels of personal hygiene such as frequent hand washing with soap and water or hand sanitisers,’’ said Ling.

He also advised the public to practice good coughing etiquette by covering the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, either by using a tissue or a face mask.

“Stay at least one metre away from individuals who have symptoms, and avoid visiting public places if you have symptoms,’’ added Ling.

He also encouraged those with symptoms to get the influenza vaccination at a private health facility.

Ling said that JKNJ will continue to monitor the situation and trend of ILI and URTI cases in Johor, as well as working with the relevant parties to ensure that control and prevention measures are carried out accordingly.

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