Sabah ready to handle novel coronavirus, says state health minister

Sabah Health and People’s Wellbeing Minister Datuk Frankie Poon said there are currently no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Sabah, but hospitals in the state are ready to deal with it. — Picture by Julia Chan
Sabah Health and People’s Wellbeing Minister Datuk Frankie Poon said there are currently no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Sabah, but hospitals in the state are ready to deal with it. — Picture by Julia Chan

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KOTA KINABALU, Feb 5 — The Sabah state government has put in place necessary measures to tackle novel coronavirus and is fully prepared to handle it.

State Health and People’s Wellbeing Minister Datuk Frankie Poon said there are currently no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Sabah, but hospitals in the state are ready to deal with it.

“Once a suspected case is found in Sabah, the Sabah Health Department will classify the patient as People Under Investigation (PUI) and initiate epidemic surveillance process to check whether or not they have novel coronavirus, including placing the PUI under isolated ward,” he said in a statement today.

Poon said government laboratories in Kota Kinabalu have the capacity to conduct tests on novel coronavirus.

He said the tests can be carried out and processed in Sabah without having the need to have them done in Kuala Lumpur.

This, he said, will allow for faster detection and confirmation of the status of the PUI.

Poon was today briefed by Sabah Health Department director Datuk Dr Christina Rundi and other officials and experts on the preventive measures to tackle the virus at the Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre, Sabah Health Department.

He also reminded those having symptoms of coronavirus such as high fever, cough, flu and breathing difficulty to seek medical advice at nearby hospitals or clinics. — Bernama

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