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Saturday, July 31, 2021

Guard ‘three doors’: the “Guard, Protect and Attack” (GPA) ward off Covid-19 infection

TIME TO guard, protect and attack - New Straits Times

Remember to sanitise your handphone, which is the most frequently used and touched object. Pic by AIZUDDIN SAAD

A MAN was infected with Covid-19 at his workplace. He ended up infecting eight members of his family, resulting in the death of one.

Covid-19 can spread easily among family members because most of us do not wear masks at home. This is one of the reasons behind the soaring number of cases recorded daily nationwide.

When asked, most Covid-19 patients say they followed their workplace’s standard operating procedure (SOP) diligently and claim to have no idea how they still contracted the virus.

The current issues such as soaring number of cases, healthcare system at breaking point and vaccine rollout are all related to when the virus has already entered our body. In fact, we are busy mopping the wet floor instead of finding the running tap and turning it off.

Let’s change our position; let’s focus on how to stop the virus from entering our body.

Imagine that you are the virus and you are waiting to infect a human body. You can do this via three doors (eyes, nose and mouth) and you are waiting for them to be opened.

You wouldn’t be able to infect someone who is wearing a mask. But he is rubbing his eyes with unsanitised hands. There’s your open door.

You landed on his phone, which he never sanitises. The next time he uses it and touches his eyes or nose, you will have a chance to enter his body.

There are so many opportunities at the workplace for the virus to enter the body. Workers may be wearing masks, but these are often removed while having meals. And there you are with three doors widely open and so many people to infect.

During my volunteer work, I have noticed that all Covid-19 patients failed in the “Guard, Protect and Attack” (GPA) strategy. They don’t understand why they were infected even though they strictly followed SOP. They may have done well on “protect” (wearing mask) and “attack” (washing/sanitising hands), but they let down their “guard”.

I’ve asked many people if they sanitise their mobile phones. Surprisingly, most said they never thought of doing this even though they wash their hands frequently.

When I tell them that after washing their hands, they would be touching their phones again and may use the “dirty” hand to rub their eyes or nose, they finally see the path of infection.

I am not saying that everyone should treat every surface they touch as contaminated. But if we touch contaminated surfaces and then rub our eyes or nose, we could expose ourselves to infection.

So please put a “security guard” by the three doors. When hands come near any door, the security guard will “stop and question” what they’ve touched. When you are alerted by your security guard, you will remember to wash your hands before rubbing your nose or eyes.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) and scientific community have been evaluating whether the coronavirus could also spread through aerosols in the absence of aerosol-generating procedures (coughing, sneezing and etc), particularly in indoor settings with poor ventilation.

But when I analysed the profile of infected families, I noticed in many cases that members who were sharing the same room could still remain negative. For example, the wife did not get infected even though her husband tested positive for Covid-19.
So, follow SOP by the book and activate the GPA strategy. Stay safe.

ASSOC PROF DR WEN LIN CHAI , Lecturer Universiti Malaya

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How does coronavirus attack your body? | COVID-19 Special .

 Most infected people, around 80 percent, will have mild symptoms which disappear after a few days. But coronaviruses can multiply fast... spreading from the throat to the lungs. And that's how they can infect lung cells until pneumonia sets in. The body is supplied by oxygen via the lungs - entering the bloodstream via the alveoli to the blood vessels. And then it is distributed to the rest of the body.

Complications can occur when the coronaviruses settle in the space between the pulmonary alveoli and the blood vessels. That can cause inflammation. The distance to the blood vessels then becomes greater and oxygen intake more difficult. When organs are deprived of oxygene, breathing is labored. And then respiratory muscles are quickly exhausted, especially in the elderly. That's when the lungs need help - with a ventilator. But that can't prevent the situation from worsening in some cases.

Inflammation in the lungs increasingly hinders gas exchange. Water escapes from the cells. Even with the support, not enough oxygen enters the body. Then an external machine must take over the function of the lungs. The so-called "Emco" enriches the blood outside the body with oxygen and then returns it into the body - but not without complications. But the situation can escalate even further.The immune system then becomes the main problem - triggering a massive inflammation as a reaction. Progression to severe cases now less common than during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic. This could be due to mask may contribute to a smaller amount of the infection in the air - making the disease less deadly. Defensive compounds flood the entire body. Immune cells attack the inner walls of blood vessels. They become weak. Fluid leaks into the tissue and is deficient in the cirulatory system. The organs are no longer sufficiently supplied with blood.

But most COVID cases are mild. The recuperating phase can cause some concentration problems, exhaustion, and muscular weakness. But this is not more severe than other infections. It could be that the virus moves through the nervous system of people it infects. That's what new research suggests. 


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Friday, July 30, 2021

COVID-19 Vaccine Malaysia Update: How many vaccinated people got COVID and reporting ghost jabs 

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This is the COVID-19 Vaccine Malaysia Update series where we will recap the latest developments of the national immunisation program in Malaysia. This week, we will talk about how many people among the new COVID-19 cases have been vaccinated and what should you do if you are believed to have received a ghost jab? And finally, everyone is allowed to record themselves when getting vaccinated.

You can watch the vaccine update in BM on our SoyaCincau Bahasa Melayu channel: 

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 0:00​​​ - Intro  

0:38 - Comments from the previous video  

2:16 - Malaysia now doing over 500,000 doses in a day  

2:57 - 3 confirmed ghost jab incidents so far  

3:43 - You can record yourself getting the vaccine 

 4:05 - Reporting blank vaccine shots  

5:21 - 16 million vaccine doses distributed in July  

5:52 - 93% of senior citizens have gotten their jab  

6:16 - About 90% of new COVID-19 cases are unvaccinated people  

7:26 - Vaccination and Registration Status


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Thursday, July 29, 2021

Lack of integrity detrimental to nation's economic growth, Malaysia's coffers run dry COVID-19 pandemic worsens


Mustapa: Lack of integrity in institutions detrimental to nation's economic growth

The COVID-19 Impact in Kuala Lumpur

KUALA LUMPUR: No country can graduate to become high-income status without first improving governance, eliminating corruption and promoting integrity in every sector, according to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.

As the public is closely watching the government’s performance in areas of governance and integrity, the Auditor General’s Department must carry out its responsibility to audit all expenditures by ministries and agencies.

Amid the aspiration to be a developed nation in both the public and private sector, Mustapa admitted that issues of concerns have emerged in the country such as fraud, corruption, poor governance, weak financial management, abuse of power, and many unethical practices.

“Lack of integrity in institutions, public and private sector will be detrimental to our nation’s economic growth.

“In the current situation when we are facing tough economic and health challenges, these subjects (good governance and integrity) have become more important.

“We must be prudent in our spending. There must be zero tolerance for abuse of power and weak governance,” he said in his speech when officiating the virtual seventh annual ECoFI Symposium (AES) 2021 yesterday.

Mustapa said every sen spent on the government’s stimulus packages has to be monitored closely to ensure that the objectives of assisting the people and businesses were achieved in times of crisis, while strengthening the governance and integrity for swift economic recovery.

Meanwhile, Malaysia Association of Certified Fraud Examiners president Datuk Seri Akhbar Satar said there are numerous actions that needed to be taken in the Covid-19 response and recovery.

These include building fair framework for data openness and access; address immediate risks in the emergency public procurement, mechanisms for effective implementation, compliance and review, safeguarding fairness in the enforcement of public integrity standards and foster a culture of integrity in leadership.

“Transparency is even more crucial during a crisis. (The) lack in checks and balances can lead to abuse of public procurement as some rules and regulations have been loosened.

“It can even lead to the practice of price fixing and collusive bidding – which are normal methods used in emergency procurement,” he said. — Bernama

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Commentary: Malaysia's coffers run dry as COVID-19 pandemic worsen - CNA

Contract doctors participate in a walkout strike at Kuala Lumpur Hospital in Malaysia on Jul 26, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Lim Huey Teng)

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Wednesday, July 28, 2021

How to test yourself for Covid-19

You can now perform your own coronavirus (COVID-19) test, in your own home. The test is for people 16 years and above. This video provides a step by step guide to help you perform the test correctly. For more information see:

The Health Ministry, through its Facebook page, has shared a how-to guide on the correct way to use the Covid-19 self-test kits that are now available in the market.

People who purchase the kits and do self-testing should follow the steps below to make sure the results are accurate.

According to the guide, which includes a video clip of a person using an RTK-Antigen kit, users are advised not to eat or drink anything other than water, or smoke before doing the test, although it does not specify for how long.

They should ensure the kit includes a user manual, extraction buffer rack, disposable swabs, extraction tube and test cassette.

Firstly, prepare the test rack by folding the rack and placing the extraction tube into the folded rack.

Then, the first swab involves taking samples from the mouth by swabbing the left and right inner cheek, and the palate, for at least five times.

The swab is then placed into the extraction tube prepared earlier.

The second swab is then done by swabbing the nostrils, gently inserting the fabric tip up to two centimetres into the nose and repeating the step for both nostrils.

While doing the nostril swab, the tip must be rolled in circles for five rounds before placing the sample into the same extraction tube.

Once both samples are immersed in the extraction buffer, it must be shaken vigorously 10 times.

To ensure samples are extracted completely, squeeze the swab by pinching the extraction tube.

Next, remove the swab from the tube and dispose of it using the disposable bag prepared.

For the test, remove the test cassette from the packaging carefully.

Add two drops of the sample into the cassette well (smaller hole on the cassette) while making sure there are no air bubbles.

The sample will start wicking up the membrane and the results can be seen in 10 to 15 minutes. Compare the results using the manual.

A positive result is marked with two lines on the cassette with one line next to Control (letter C) and another line (even faded) next to Test (letter T).

A negative result of the test is represented by a single line next to the letter C.

Meanwhile, if there is no line seen or a line seen next to only the letter T, the result is invalid and the test needs to be repeated.

If the result is positive, users must consult a healthcare professional immediately and an assessment will be made based on the patient’s medical background.

An additional test using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) will also be made, and the patient needs to self-isolate.

There are currently a few self-test kits approved by the Health Ministry through the Medical Devices Authority (MDA): the Salixium Covid-19 Rapid Antigen Rapid Test (saliva/nasal swab samples) made by Reszon Diagnostic International Sdn Bhd, and Gmate Covid-19 Ag Saliva For Home Use by Philosys Co Ltd of Korea, which were given conditional approval to be distributed locally.

Another kit is the Beright Covid-19 Antigen Rapid Test Device (Oral Fluid) made by Hangzhou Alltest Biotech Co Ltd, which was announced on Sunday.

The list will be updated from time to time, and it can also be checked at the MDA portal.

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US must see its own human rights issues ! 

 China should use sustained development & strength building to overwhelm US' will to contain China 

The US cannot overwhelm China. China should use sustained development and strength building to overwhelm the US' will to contain China. This is the determination of the Chinese people.

It's a consensus that China have sufficient power to restrain US' extreme impulses towards China

  The rapid deterioration of Sino-US relations and US' all-out pressure on China as its No. 1 strategic adversary has triggered a sense of urgency among many Chinese to accelerate efforts to improve our nuclear deterrence.

TIANJIN: Foreign Ministry Vice-Minister Xie Feng has said the China-US relationship is in a stalemate, “faces serious difficulties”, and the fundamental reason behind this is because some Americans portray China as an “imagined enemy”.

Xie, vice-minister in charge of US affairs, made the remarks during talks with visiting US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman here yesterday.

He noted the “Pearl Harbor moment” and “Sputnik moment” have been brought up by some Americans when talking about conflict with China and challenges facing the United States.

Some international scholars, including some US academics, perceive this as comparing China to Japan in World War II and the Soviet Union in the Cold War, he said.

By making China an “imagined enemy”, he added, a national sense of purpose could be reignited in the US, and their hope may be that by demonising China, the US could shift domestic public discontent over political, economic and social issues.

“A whole-of-government and whole-of-society campaign is being waged to bring China down”, Xie said, adding the belief appears to be when China’s development is contained, all US domestic and external challenges would go away, and the US would “become great” again and the so-called Pax Americana would continue.

He criticised the US for manufacturing issues with China, noting that the US side appears to have nothing else to talk about.

“We urge the United States to change its highly misguided mindset and dangerous policy,” he said.

The US is in no position to lecture China on democracy and human rights, said Xie, urging the US to address its own human rights issues first.

Xie pointed out that historically, the US had engaged in genocide against Native Americans. Presently, the US has lost 620,000 lives because of its halting response to Covid-19. Internationally, the frequent US military action and the wars caused by US lies have brought undue catastrophe to the world.

“How can the United States portray itself as the world’s spokesperson for democracy and human rights?” Xie asked.

Xie said the US side was in no position to lecture China on democracy and human rights.

“Without the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China, an effective political system and a development path suited to China’s circumstances, how could it be possible for the Chinese people to ever generate such immense creativity and productivity if people on the streets in China were all denied democracy, freedoms and human rights?

“Without those, how could a super-sized country like China with over a billion people ever achieve the twin miracles of rapid economic growth and sustained social stability?” Xie said. — China Daily/ANN

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Monday, July 26, 2021

Govcoins and crypto to coexist


GOVERNMENT-backed coins and private cryptocurrencies will coexist for a while, despite rising regulatory walls set by the government to counter virtual coins, experts at a global webinar session said Thursday.

Noting that cryptocurrencies and digital currencies by governments are “two different animals,” they will coexist for now partly because current cryptocurrencies are not actually solving payment problems.

“How many of them (cryptocurrencies) are solving actual payment problem? Most of them are speculative and used as a means of storage,” said Nelson Chow, chief fintech officer of the Fintech Facilitation Office at the Hong Kong Monetary Authority.

Chow said that some central bank digital currency, or CBDC, projects such as Multiple CBDC Bridge have the potential to solve decades-old problems for cross-border transactions. Multiple CBDC Bridge is a wholesale CBDC co-creation project between the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, Bank of Thailand, the People‘s Bank of China and the Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates.

Under the current regulatory environment, John Kiffmeiste, a former senior financial sector expert at the International Monetary Fund, said that it is unlikely that the emergence of CBDC projects, now numbering nearly 60 according to Kiffmeiste’s data, would make crypto assets obsolete.

“CBDC has to operate within confines of tax regulations, anti-money laundering, KYC (know-your-customer) and so many other regulations whereas cryptocurrencies don’t operate in that environment,” the economist added.

Speakers at the webinar co-hosted by The Investor, a tech media outlet run by The Korea Herald, Malaysia’s The Star and the Asia News Network.Speakers at the webinar co-hosted by The Investor, a tech media outlet run by The Korea Herald, Malaysia’s The Star and the Asia News Network.

But, Kiffmeiste pointed out that as the regulatory and legislative walls are closing in on crypto assets, they will come under the same rules that other types of conventional currencies operate under. “In that case, that levels the playing field. Perhaps in that new world, CBDCs and cryptocurrencies coexist, but crypto assets become redundant as at least payment medium.”

Andrew Sheng, one of Asia’s top economists, stressed that authorities should understand the complex contextual backgrounds that have brought about the rising interest in CBDCs and cryptocurrencies.

Noting that the value of the cryptocurrency market has reached US$1.2tril – half the value of the official gold reserves – Sheng said cryptocurrencies had grown outside of the purview of public control. “This was the big lesson of the Covid-19, private cyber currencies will be with us whether you like it or not,” Sheng said.

The tug-of-war between regulators and cryptocurrencies is most apparent in the US in the area of stablecoins like USD Coin, a digital equivalent of the US dollar.

The US-proposed Stable Act will bring USD stablecoin issuers into conventional regulatory perimeters.

Kevin Werbach, a professor of legal studies and business ethics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, said that the cryptocurrency industry does not have to be allergic to regulations.

“There is always a notion that we have to choose either innovation or regulation. And I think it’s a false dichotomy. For new technological markets to mature and develop, they need to be trusted. They need to get to the point where ordinary people around the world are willing to participate in these activities at scale, and regulations are an important part of that,” Werbach said.

As to the increasing public controls on crypto assets, speakers called for regulations compatible with the emerging cryptocurrency industry. They shared a similar view that cryptocurrency companies and regulators must work together on bringing the industry into the system.

“Since innovation is always ahead of regulation, it is inevitable for regulators to rely on us when drafting policies. It is crucial to reshape their ‘legacy mindset’ and make them understand the nature and dynamics of cryptocurrency,” said Marcus Lim, CEO and co-founder of Zipmex.

They were speaking at a webinar co-hosted by The Investor, a tech media outlet run by The Korea Herald, Malaysia’s The Star and the Asia News Network entitled “The rise of Govcoins & What’s next for crypto”. Speakers at the July 22 virtual seminar included a group of experts in the US, Europe and Asia who are navigating the current situation surrounding the development of central bank digital currencies and challenges posed by and to cryptocurrencies.

Experts said that central bank digital currencies have a huge potential to solve many issues, ranging from decades-old problems involving cross-border transactions to digital transformation.

Kiffmeiste noted that almost 60 jurisdictions are currently exploring retail CBDCs, with countries like the Bahamas and China at the forefront, but they are divided in their motivations for issuing the CBDCs. For instance, emerging economies consider CBDCs as a way to spur financial digitalisation, while advanced economics mull digital currency as part of financial stability and to improve monetary policies. — The Korea Herald/Asia News Network

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China needs to play tough with US on virus origins tracing


Origin-tracing. Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

 By forcing the World Health Organization to put the focus of the COVID-19 origins tracing on China again, the US intends to kill two birds with one stone: help the US shift the blame of poor pandemic handling, and build a long-term strategic public opinion and political containment against China by tracing the COVID-19 origins. China's only choice is to fight back with more intensity.

The Biden administration's overall response to the pandemic has been no better than the Trump administration's. Breakthrough of the COVID-19 vaccine research was achieved during Trump's administration. The Biden administration's efforts to mobilize American population to fully get vaccinated have failed to fulfill its promise. And the epidemic is back on the rise. The Biden administration, which faces a growing risk of being punished in the midterm elections for its poor response to the pandemic, now has as much political need to blame China as the Trump administration.

The Biden administration is fully copying the Trump administration's line of political hooliganism: using every means to frame China. As the epidemic continues to rage in the US, Washington is finding it hard to directly shift its responsibility to China. Therefore they are playing the "COVID-19 origins card" fiercely, and comprehensively politicized a task that should have been scientifically advanced as nothing mobilizes Americans more than politics. Making Americans mad can make them stupid. Then they will feel that the ridiculous notion that China is responsible for US' failure to fight the pandemic "makes sense."

The vast majority of scientists and US media outlets last year publicly disapproved the allegation of a "lab leak" from Wuhan Institute of Virology. Recently, a large number of them changed their stance, and did not believe the conclusion that the link between the Wuhan Virology Institute and the epidemic had been basically ruled out after the WHO expert team visited the lab last year. A large part of the American scientific and public opinion community was apparently "fooled" by the Biden administration and became "political animals" to follow the politicians.

Trump's strategy was to teach Americans to hate China until they felt that the US government was lovable no matter how stupid it was. New cases in the US now reach 40,000 or 50,000 in a single day under the Biden administration, and it's going up. This is not a small number, even compared to daily cases during Trump's administration. The pandemic-response is still poor even with the vaccines. If American voters don't hate China very much, how can they not find out that they elected people to lead the country who are even more stupid than the last one?

The Democratic Party has only a one seat advantage in the Senate and a limited edge in the House of Representatives, the Biden administration's rapid descent into a lame-duck administration would be a joke if the Democrats lose both Senate and the House next year. As a result, the Democratic administration quickly acted recklessly. They inherited almost all the previous administration's China-bashing policies and went even further.

Tracing the origins of the virus is a good topic for Washington, because it's one that makes scientists frown. This is an area where political maneuvering is best done in a way that confuses the public: Since it's hard to reach a definitive conclusion quickly, the US can claim what it says it "right."

The aggressive and arrogant Western ideological bloc assembled by the US is now making the world lose basic moral rule and less open to debate. The coordinates of justice have been destroyed, the standards of good and evil have been tampered with. The US often talks about dealing with China "from a position of strength," but Washington itself in fact is in its relatively weakest position of strength, and they have even abused the definition of "position of strength."

The US leads the world in the epidemic death toll, but it still bosses around the world in the global fight against the pandemic. Washington is invincible because it is impudent. In dealing with the US on controversial issues, China must understand that there is no reasoning with the US at all. We only reason with the world, and we have no choice but to play hardball with the US.

We should demonstrate our determination and ability to confront the US and resolutely fight the arrogance of the US. The Biden administration's ability to deal with difficult issues between China and the US is much weaker than the Trump administration's. They already have far fewer resources than they had four years ago, and Biden himself has less decision-making power than Trump. On issues such as tracing the origins of the virus, we need to be tough with Washington. We need to make sure that whatever Washington says is in vain, and let the world see its rhetoric as a joke. The world will ultimately see Washington paying the price for its wrong China policy.

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Saturday, July 24, 2021

Malaysia’s Covid-19 upward trend continues to new high of 17,045 on July 25, to-date: 1,013,348 !

 The previous record high number of new infections was 13,215, posted on July 15. (Photo by Mohd Suhaimi Mohamed Yusuf/The Edge)

Upward trend continues


TODAY 24/07/2021: 15, 902 CASES, 184 DEATH !

25/07/2021:  17,045 Cases, To-date: 1,013,348 !

KUALA LUMPUR (July 23): Malaysia’s daily Covid-19 cases surged to a new high of 15,573 today — compared with 13,034 yesterday — in line with an increase in the testing rate, the Health Ministry said.

The previous record high number of new infections was 13,215, posted on July 15.

A total of 137,326 Covid-19 tests were conducted today, compared with 128,279 yesterday, with today’s positivity rate recorded at 11.34%.

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said 98.7% of today’s infections were classified as Category 1 and 2 cases.

He said 53.1% or 8,273 of cases were classified as Category 1 (no symptoms), and 45.6% or 7,095 cases were Category 2 (mild symptoms).

Only 0.6% or 102 cases were classified as Category 3 (pneumonia), 0.5% or 74 cases were Category 4 (pneumonia requiring oxygen therapy), and 0.2% or 29 cases were Category 5 (critical and requiring assisted ventilation).

Dr Noor Hisham said the total number of Covid-19 cases reported by the country now stands at 980,491.

Selangor reported 7,672 new cases today — the first time the state breached the 7,000 level.

Kuala Lumpur, meanwhile, saw new infections surpassing the 2,000 level at 2,063, the highest daily figure reported by the nation’s capital since the pandemic began. 


Other states with three-digit new cases included Kedah (937), Johor (722), Negeri Sembilan (682), Penang (530), Sabah (516), Sarawak (461), Pahang (457), Melaka (452), Perak (415), Kelantan (372) and Terengganu (229).

Total deaths rise to 7,718


Meanwhile, 144 Covid-19 related deaths were reported today, raising the country’s death toll to 7,718.

Of the latest fatalities, 66 deaths were reported in Selangor, 16 in Kuala Lumpur, 15 in Johor, 13 in Melaka, 10 in Negeri Sembilan, eight in Pahang, six in Kedah, three in Sarawak, two each in Perak and Penang and one each in Sabah, Terengganu and Labuan.

Daily recoveries, on the other hand, came in higher at 10,094 from yesterday’s 8,436.

Active cases soared further to 147,386, in tandem with the rise in new infections today.

Of this, 939 patients are placed in the intensive care unit, with 456 of them requiring breathing assistance. 

To date, 825,387 individuals have been declared cured of Covid-19 while 980,491 Malaysians have been detected with the virus.

R0 declines to 1.07 on July 22

Dr Noor Hisham said the country's basic reproduction number (R-naught or R0) for Covid-19 infections nationwide declined to 1.07 yesterday (July 22) from 1.09 the day before, with Terengganu having the highest R0 at 1.44.

Kedah and Putrajaya came in next at 1.22, followed by Johor at 1.20, and Sabah at 1.19.

The R0 projects the average number of people that each new Covid-19 patient will infect, or what is termed the effective reproduction number. An R0 of less than 1.0 means the infection is not spreading.

119 cases involving variants of concern detected

Dr Noor Hisham also shared that the ongoing studies by the Institute of Medical Research and the Institution of Community Health and Medicine of Universiti Malaysia Sarawak have identified a total of 119 cases involving variants of concern.

“106 cases were of the Delta variant (B.1.617.2), 10 cases were of the Beta variant (B.1.351) and another three were of the Alpha variant (B.1.1.7),” he said.

With this, the total number of cases involving variants of concern to date is 409.

“There are 206 cases of Beta variant, 189 cases of Delta variant and 14 cases of Alpha variant,” said Dr Noor Hisham.

30 new clusters with 16 from communities

The Health Ministry also identified 30 new clusters today, including 16 in communities. The remaining clusters were linked to workplaces, high-risk groups, religious centres and higher education.

To date, 3,391 clusters have been detected by the ministry, with 2,433 declared ended. That leaves 958 active clusters.

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