PETALING JAYA: Barbers and hairdressers should be allowed to resume business by following the same procedures as nurses attending to patients, according to former deputy health minister Dr Lee Boon Chye.
He questioned the government’s delay in announcing hygiene protocols for barbers and hairdressers since a public backlash followed when they were allowed to reopen in early May.
The delay was ridiculous, he said, as there were several methods available.
“The SOP can be the same as that for nurses treating ordinary patients – wear a good quality mask, wash their hands in between patients, and disinfect after dealing with each patient
“Or, have a plastic shield separating the customer and the hairdresser with only the gloved hands of the hairdresser touching the customers hair,” he said.
Lee, a medical doctor by profession, said there had not been any reports of Covid-19 transmission between patients and nurses. “SOPs do not need to be so difficult. It is just about how to prevent transmission,” he said.
Two weeks ago, senior minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob had said officials were drafting procedures for hairdressers.
Why not use hotels for quarantine instead of temporary hospitals
Lee also suggested that hotels facing closure be used as quarantine centres, instead of costly temporary hospitals being built for asymptomatic patients, mild cases and patients under investigations.
“There are so many hotels closing down, they have the facilities which can be converted to suit the needs with minimum facilities,” he said.
Lee also suggested that construction sites be allowed to house only five workers in a dormitory to minimise the spread of Covid-19. “At present about 20 to 30 workers are placed at cramped places,” he said.
Lee said social distancing among documented workers was equally important to prevent a spike in cases from cramped dormitories as in Singapore.
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