JOHOR BARU: Johor is one of the five states in Malaysia with the highest cumulative cases of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) as of August 12.
State health and unity committee chairman Ling Tian Soon said statistics from the Health Ministry showed the state has 8,782 cases or 6.5% of nationwide cases.
He said Selangor was at the top spot with 36,122 cases (26.9%), followed by Perak (13,751 or 10.2%), the Federal Territories of Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya (13,609 or 10.1%), and Sarawak (9,803 or 7.3%).
“We recorded an 11.8% decline in HFMD cases in epidemiological week 32 compared with week 31 this year,’’ Ling said in a statement.
He said the Johor Baru district recorded the highest cumulative cases with 3,045 (34.7% the state's cases), followed by Kluang (1,129 or 12.9%), Batu Pahat (901 or 10.3%), Tangkak (896 or 10.2%), Segamat (781 or 8.9%), Kota Tinggi (711 or 8.1%), Pontian (579 or 6.6%), Muar (332 or 3.8%), Kulai (274 or 3.1%) and Mersing (132 or 1.5%).
“So far, there is only one active outbreak of HFMD reported in the state, in the Johor Baru district,’’ he said.
Meanwhile, Ling said 18 clusters of respiratory tract infections, namely influenza-like illnesses (ILI) and upper respiratory tract infections (URTI) were reported in the state, with 1,531 cases involving educational institutions.
He said monitoring carried out by the Johor Health Department on ILI and URTI found that the situation was under control, although several clusters were detected at boarding schools.
“The public is advised to take preventive measures by practising high levels of personal hygiene such as frequent hand washing with soap and water or hand sanitisers,’’ said Ling.
He also advised the public to practise good coughing etiquette by covering the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, either by using a tissue or a face mask.
“Stay at least one metre away from individuals who have symptoms, and avoid visiting places if you have symptoms,’’ added Ling.
He also encouraged those with symptoms to get influenza vaccination at private health facilities.
Ling said that the department will continue to monitor the situation and trend of ILI and URTI in Johor as well as work with the relevant parties to ensure that control and prevention measures are carried out accordingly.