23 new Covid-19 cases, Sabah records the highest infections

PUTRAJAYA: The health ministry reported 23 new Covid-19 cases today, 10 imported cases.

Sabah recorded the highest number of cases – 13 cases, including eight from the Pulau cluster.

There were no cases reported in Kedah.

The new infections bring the number of cases to 9,969.

Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said at a press conference here that six patients were discharged today, bringing the total number of recoveries to 9,209.

There are 632 active cases currently.

There were no new deaths reported.

Similar Covid-19 strain in Tawau and Kedah

Noor Hisham said lab tests showed the genome of the virus in the Sivagangga cluster and Sungai cluster was identical to that of the Tawau cluster in Sabah.

However, he said the ministry had yet to link the infections between the two clusters.

“We have completed our 28-day observation of the Sivagangga cluster and are now observing the Tawau cluster.

“But what is certain is that the genomes are the same,” he said.

He said the genome of the virus in Kedah was different from that in Bukit Tiram in Johor as the virus was from the Philippines.

On the infections in Sabah, Noor Hisham said they were looking at curbing the spread of the virus after positive cases were reported in a police station and a prison in Lahad Datu.

In the Benteng Lahad Datu cluster, he said, the index case involved a foreigner in lock-up.

The virus had infected other detainees due to limited space and delays in checks, he said, adding that new and old detainees should not be placed in the same area.

“After undergoing tests, they need to be isolated for 14 days,” he said.

Noor Hisham urged Malaysians to follow the SOPs to curb the transmission.

He said people need to practise physical distancing and avoid crowded areas when necessary.

“Those are the basic rules which can reduce the incidence of infection by 75%,” he said, adding medical frontliners should comply with clinical practice guidelines at all times.

He also warned that the ministry may propose an enhanced movement control order to be imposed if the number of infections shoot up.