Focus must now shift from the number of Covid-19 cases reported to the severity of cases, says health minister Khairy Jamaluddin.
He said it is now common anywhere in the world for the number of cases reported to be less than the actual number of infections due to more relaxed testing protocols.
“In this situation, we look at proxy indicators. We don’t look at the number of cases but their severity,” he said at a press conference today.
Khairy said that when the country is transitioning to the endemic phase, the focus must be on the severity of the cases, which can be seen through the number of deaths and hospital admissions.
He said Malaysia will see increases and drops in the number of new cases due to waves of infections from time to time.
He pointed out that the country’s baseline number of cases has increased due to the Omicron BA.5 variant but the situation is under control as long as the number of deaths and hospital admissions remain low.
Khairy also said that compared to countries like Singapore that face a large Omicron BA.5 wave, Malaysia is facing a small but prolonged wave.
He urged the public to follow the SOPs and report their Covid-19 test results via the MySejahtera application.
“When results are reported, this makes it easier for the health ministry to monitor the actual situation in the community, aside from also looking at the number of deaths and hospitalisations,” he said.
Yesterday, FMT reported that the number of new Covid-19 cases increased from 28,339 to 28,554, or 0.8%, last week from the week before.
Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, in his update for the week ending Aug 6, said the number of patients admitted to public hospitals and quarantine centres remained unchanged.
The number of hospital admissions per population of 100,000 compared with the preceding week also remained unchanged.
Overall bed occupancy for non-critical beds rose by 2% while intensive care unit (ICU) beds remained unchanged at 14%. FMT