3 new deaths take virus toll to 53

PUTRAJAYA: A total of three new deaths were reported today, pushing the toll from Covid-19 to 53.

Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah also said 60 patients had recovered, bringing the total number of discharged cases to 827.

However, 217 new cases were reported, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 3,333.

At a press conference, he said 108 patients are currently being treated in the intensive care unit (ICU) with 54 in need of respiratory assistance.

The three deceased were two women aged 84 and 73 from Selangor and Perak and a 52-year-old man who passed away in Negeri Sembilan.

Noor Hisham said the two women had a history of non-communicable diseases while the man had been admitted at a late stage after contracting the virus.

He also said 138 health ministry staff have tested positive so far, although none of the cases are related to the handling of Covid-19 cases in wards or ICUs.

He said 58 of the cases were linked to a wedding ceremony which was also attended by individuals who had been at the Sri Petaling mosque gathering.

The other cases were related to overseas travel, close contact with friends or family who had tested positive, and exposure from on-field screening.

The source of infection for 42 others is still under investigation.

Noor Hisham said Selangor still has the highest number of cases, with 50% of the cases related to tahfiz and madrasah schools frequented by members of the tabligh.

“In Selangor, there are more than 600 cases. Half of those cases come from Hulu Langat,” he said.

He also said the room occupancy rate in hospitals treating Covid-19 cases was only around 10% out of 1,792 rooms, with the capacity still to increase to 19,000 rooms with the aid of health ministry training institutes.

The number of beds available has also been increased from 5,292 to 6,921, with 410 critical care beds and 634 ventilators at hand.

“We also have seven health ministry training institutes for those positive cases who are asymptomatic and those with mild symptoms,” he said.