Covid-19: Over 16k residents and staff at homes for elderly tested so far

Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Siti Zailah Mohd Yusof.

KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 16,425 senior citizens and staff at homes for the elderly have undergone Covid-19 screenings in efforts to check the spread of the virus, says Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Siti Zailah Mohd Yusof.

"Together with the Health Ministry, we have screened all residents and staff at 17 institutions under the Welfare Department, involving 2,376 individuals.

"The screening was done to prevent the spread of Covid-19 at homes for the elderly.

"This was widened to cover 432 centres for the elderly which are managed by the private sector and non-governmental organisations, where a total of 14,049 residents and staff were tested," she said when answering a question raised by June Leow Hsiad Hui (PH-Hulu Selangor) in the Dewan Rakyat on Wednesday (Dec 2).

She added that Covid-19 preventive guidelines and SOPs were also issued to all homes for the elderly to help stem the spread of the virus during the movement control order (MCO) period.

This, she said, included disinfecting homes for the elderly under the Welfare Department and supplying them with items needed to prevent the spread of the virus.

Siti Zailah also said that several programmes and dialogue sessions were held to educate the elderly on Covid-19 and the new normal that they would have to face.

"The Home Help Services programme also helped reach to out to the elderly during the MCO period with the participation of 1,992 volunteers as of October," she added.

She noted that monthly payments for clients under the Home Help Services programme were increased from RM30 a month to RM80 under Budget 2021 and payments for volunteers helping the elderly were also increased from RM150 a month to RM400.

Siti Zailah added that some 44,000 elderly residents at 131 Pusat Aktiviti Warga Emas would also receive Prihatin aid.

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