‘Workplace clusters our bane’


PETALING JAYA: Workplace infections continue to contribute to the emergence of new clusters, despite Malaysia seeing a decline in new Covid-19 cases, says the Health director-general.

Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said a large portion of workplace clusters involved the manufacturing sector.

“The manufacturing sector reported the highest number of cases in the category of workplace clusters: 95,156 cases and 639 clusters,” he said in a press statement yesterday.

As at yesterday, a total of 1,328 workplace clusters have been reported.

“A total of 624,246 individuals have been screened in the clusters, with 147,040 cases confirmed positive,” he said, adding that the test positivity rate was as high as 23.6%. The positivity rate indicates the portion of Covid-19 infections detected out of the total tests conducted.

Dr Noor Hisham also said that many cases in workplace clusters involved non-Malaysians, at 100,086 cases (or 68% of the total).

He said the top five active workplace clusters with the highest number of cases were the Jalan Tiga Salak Tinggi cluster (Selangor), Industri Senawang cluster (Negri Sembilan and Melaka), Industri Batu Berendam cluster (Melaka), Jalan Padang Tembak cluster (Kelantan and Terengganu), and Tok Has cluster (Terengganu).

“The ministry has set various guidelines and a standard operating procedure (SOP) for workplaces such as physical distancing and limiting the number of workers on site.

“Even so, it was found that the level of awareness about the importance of adhering to the SOP still needs to be raised.

“There is still a portion of society who only care about following the SOP when there is enforcement. Such negligence has contributed to the rise in Covid-19 cases, especially in workplaces,” he added.

Malaysia saw a continued dip in new Covid-19 cases, recording 4,949 cases yesterday, as well as 6,588 recoveries.

At present, there are 71,625 active cases, 921 of which are in the intensive care unit and 459 of them requiring ventilator support.

There were also 60 fatalities, 18 of which were in Selangor, nine in Johor, eight in Kuala Lumpur, seven in Negri Sembilan, six in Sarawak, four in Labuan, two each in Penang and Kelantan, and one each in Sabah, Terengganu, Perak and Melaka.

The fatalities involved patients aged between 34 and 98 years old.

Seventeen new clusters were also identified, 12 of which were linked to workplace transmissions.

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