No need to wear face masks unless you have flu-like symptoms, says Deputy Health Minister

  • Nation
  • Sunday, 02 Feb 2020

IPOH: No human-to-human transmission of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCov) has been reported in the country, and thus there is no need for the public to panic and start wearing masks, says Dr Lee Boon Chye (pic).

The Deputy Health Minister said those without any flu-like symptoms, cough or fever need not wear the masks.

“However those with such symptoms must wear the masks to prevent infecting others, as it is also the influenza season.

“What is more important is to keep on washing hands properly using soap,” he told reporters after attending a Chinese New Year function by the Perak Chinese Assembly Hall on Sunday (Feb 2).

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Dr Lee said if a mask is not worn properly, there is also a risk for infection.

Citing an example, he said if a person has flu symptoms, and the hands are not washed properly, using the same hands to wear a mask could cause infection as well.

“If we start telling people to wear masks, then the next panic question will be, should schools, cinemas, shopping malls and gathering be closed, or cancelled.

“Therefore it is always advisable to listen to the health professionals involved in containing the virus.

“We don’t want unwarranted panic,” he added.

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