The Ministry of Health (MOH) has recommended the education sector to conduct screening on students, teachers and staff after 11 of the 18 Covid-19 clusters reported in the seventh epidemiological week 2023 (ME 13/2023) from March 26 to April 1, were education clusters.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah in a statement today said of the total, six clusters involved educational institutions under the Ministry of Education (MOE) involving three colleges, a religious school, a boarding school and a secondary school.
He said the five other clusters involved four non-MOE schools/colleges and one childcare centre.
“The current increase in the number of Covid-19 cases and clusters came about following the re-opening of the school session in mid-March 2023. The increase in cases is also due to active community movements during the last school holiday season,“ he said.
As such, he said the education sector is advised to perform screening on symptomatic students, teachers and staff before entering the school or institution and conduct RTK-Ag tests on students, teachers and staff in accordance with the Covid-19 testing strategy.
In addition, parents also need to monitor their children’s health and be responsible not to send them to school if they have symptoms.
Risk assessments on the spread of Covid-19 in the respective institutions must also be conducted from time to time so that preventive measures can be taken immediately.
Dr Noor Hisham also reminded district health officials that positive cases reported by schools or educational institutions must be investigated and a risk assessment carried out to identify potential transmission risks, apart from performing cleaning, disinfecting and contact tracing.
He also advised the public to continue practising TRIIS (Trace, Report, Isolate, Inform, and, Seek) to control the spread of Covid-19.
On the development of Covid-19 cases, Dr Noor Hisham said the number of patient admissions to health facilities per 100,000 residents increased by 24.1 per cent in ME 13/2023 compared to ME 12/2023 bringing the cumulative number of new cases to 5,052,337 and the number of recoveries to 5,004,546.cases. – Bernama