No new local Covid-19 cases reported

PUTRAJAYA: No local Covid-19 infections were reported by the health ministry today, although four imported cases brought the total number so far to 8,729

Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said four patients have recovered, bringing the total number of patients discharged so far to 8,524, or 97.7% of the total number of cases.

He said there are currently 83 active cases. Six patients are being treated in the intensive care unit (ICU), with two needing respiratory assistance.

No new Covid-19 related deaths were reported, with the toll remaining at 122.

Noor Hisham said the four imported cases comprised three Malaysians and one permanent resident who had returned from Singapore, Russia and the United Arab Emirates.

The Novgorod PUI (patients under investigation) cluster recorded one new case. A previously reported patient has also been linked to the cluster, bringing the total number of cases to five.

The first case in the cluster involved a Malaysian who returned from Russia on July 5. He was found to be infected upon arrival at KLIA and was admitted to Sungai Buloh Hospital.

The second case was a friend who was on the same flight who had initially tested negative at the airport screening. However, he started having a fever and breathing difficulties two days later and tested positive during a second screening.

His father, who was among four family members who picked the second patient from the airport, also tested positive.

Noor Hisham said contact tracing efforts are ongoing, while the source of infection still being probed.

Meanwhile, the second Kuala Lumpur construction site cluster officially ended after completing its 28-day monitoring period with no new cases reported.

The cluster recorded 73 cases in total, involving 72 migrant workers and one Malaysian.

Noor Hisham said Malaysia was still in discussions on taking part in vaccine trials, and that tests were now in the third stage involving trials on humans.

He said the ministry will monitor the vaccine’s ability to stimulate a consistent antibody response in patients.

“After three months in the Sungai Lui cluster, we found that the antibody built up was only 20%. It should be up to 80% or 90%. After the increase, only then can we talk about herd immunity.

“So, in terms of low antibody response, it means that those who have been infected could get the virus again,” he said.

He said other studies found similar results in recovered patients’ antibodies.

Noor Hisham also said Putrajaya’s early preparations in December last year had helped in public health response, highlighting that the ministry had 23 laboratories prepared to process tests even before the first case was reported here.

He said the protocol for tests prepared in advance by the ministry was also similar to the one released by the World Health Organization later on.

He reminded Malaysians to continue complying with the SOPs, reiterating that life cannot return to normal just yet.

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