Make comparison between states, not just highlight Selangor with most COVID-19 cases
SHAH ALAM, July 27 — Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said a comparison on the Covid-19 infection rate between states should be made instead of highlighting Selangor to be recording the highest daily figures.
During the special parliamentary sitting today, the Kuala Selangor MP stressed that he had previously emphasised several times the correlation between Selangor’s high population density and the state’s continuous spike in daily cases.
“If Selangor has 68 cases, it is equivalent to one case reported in Labuan. If there are 100 cases in Labuan, it equals 6,800 infections in Selangor. Therefore, the population density and ratio should be taken into account.
“Do not simply announce in the daily press conferences that Selangor has the highest (daily Covid-19 cases) when a nationwide screening should be done to achieve an accurate matrix,” the former Health Minister told the Dewan Rakyat today.
Dr Dzulkefly, who is also the Selangor Task Force for Covid-19 (STFC), had also stated that the Federal government had accepted the task force’s proposal to use results obtained from antigen rapid test kit (RTK-Ag) to confirm Covid-19 cases.
He said this is because speed is an important factor in the management of pandemics and breaking the chain of infection. However, he said the Health Ministry (MOH) had only accepted the results using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rt-PCR).
Dr Dzulkefly said this had led to a waiting period of between three to five days before a suspected Covid-19 patient is contacted by
the district health centre before being told to get screened at public health clinics.
“In the current situation, there should be cheap, immediate and high-frequency testing. The rt-PCR is a clinical test while RTK-Ag is an epidemiological test to control the spread (of the infection).
“But Alhamdulillah (praise be to God) after almost a year and a half, I noticed that there has been a change as confirmed Covid-19 positive cases are now accepted using RTK-Ag results without repeat screening using the rt-PCR test,” he said.
Following the said initiative, Dr Dzulkefly added that this had reflected in the upsurge of Covid-19 cases nationwide, including Selangor, which often had been stigmatised by the public