PUTRAJAYA: The Health Ministry has urged caution over the upcoming Hari Raya festivities after a new Covid-19 case was detected in Kelantan.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said it was important for those celebrating Hari Raya to adhere to the ministry’s Covid-19 guidelines to prevent a “Hari Raya cluster” from happening.
“Hari Raya is very important for Muslims. But the government has already decided that it should only be celebrated among family members.
“Those celebrating must practise a high standard of hygiene. Always clean your hands with water or sanitiser, and also disinfect your homes.
“The police too are on duty to stop those without approval from crossing borders between states.
“As for those in ‘green zones’, they must act as a community and protect their village or district from the spread of the virus, ” he told reporters after the Sponsored Research Awards 2020 presentation ceremony here.
Dr Adham was asked to comment on a new infection in Kelantan, believed to involve someone who had crossed borders to get into the state recently.
The ministry is tracing the patient’s contacts.
“Kelantan has been a green zone for quite some time. But now it has a new case.
“With Hari Raya coming up, we are worried about a ‘Hari Raya cluster’, ” said Dr Adham.
Based on trends, he said infections were more likely to happen when there was a mass gathering or mass movement.
“We are always prepared for any eventuality. This is a concern and we pray it does not happen, ” he said.
Earlier, Dr Adham presented the Sponsored Research Award 2020 to several recipients.
Among them were Dr Voon Pei Jye from Sarawak General Hospital (Top Recruiter Award), Dr Lily Wong from Queen Elizabeth Hospital (Investigator of the Year Award), Sultan Ismail Hospital (Clinical Trial Site of the Year Award), Merck Sharp & Dohme (Sponsor of the Year Award) and IQVIA Malaysia (CRO of the Year Award).
In his speech, Dr Adham said that since 2012, the clinical research industry had brought in a cumulative gross national income of RM527mil in contract value, as well as created more than 2,000 skilled jobs in clinical research.
“My appreciation goes out to sponsors and contract research organisations which have always worked hard to bring innovative treatments to Malaysia.
“With the continuous efforts of all stakeholders, I am confident clinical research can be a significant contributor to the economy in the near future, ” he said.
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