KUALA LUMPUR: Kim Jong-nam died within 20 minutes of being poisoned, said Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam.
Dr Subramaniam added that the amount of VX given to Jong-nam would have been more than the lethal amount of 10 milligrams.
"It only requires 10mg to be absorbed into the system to be lethal, so I presume that the amount that went into him was more than that and this is a chemical agent that is absorbed well into the skin," said Dr Subramaniam.
He said this when speaking to media at the Heath Management Institute at Bangsar on Sunday.
Dr Subramaniam added that the medical staff who attended to Jong-nam will be monitored for the next two to three weeks, saying that none of them have shown any symptoms of being affected by VX, which is a banned nerve agent.
"We need to observe them for a period of time as symptoms can come later when exposed to small amounts," he said.
He added that he had directed Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah to have the personnel undergo medical examinations from the day they treated Jong-nam.
"We will do follow-up checks to see whether there are delayed reactions," said Dr Subramaniam.
On positive identification of Jong-nam's body, he said that there are ways of identification that can be used should no next of kin come forward to claim his body.
He said they included dental profiling and examining the body for identifying marks.
"If we have an idea of the deceased's dental structure, then we can do a comparison and confirm his identity. There are other things on the body such as moles, and we can then compare them with photos of the deceased," said Dr Subramaniam.
Jong-nam was killed by two women who wiped his face with a chemical at the KLIA2 departure hall at about 9am on Feb 13 as he was leaving for Macau.