Medical group calls for MCO to be extended beyond phase two

Personnel from the Emergency Response Team screen members of the public at KL Sentral March 20, 2020. ― Picture by Yusof Mat isa
Personnel from the Emergency Response Team screen members of the public at KL Sentral March 20, 2020. ― Picture by Yusof Mat isa

KUALA LUMPUR, April 9 — A group of medical professionals led by the Academy of Medicine Malaysia (AMM) today urged the government to extend the movement control order (MCO) beyond phase two which ends on April 14.

The group warned that the mass exodus of people during the Hari Raya season poses a risk of spreading the virus beyond control, and that it was too soon to resume a state of normalcy with no cure or vaccine available just yet.

“The risks of spreading the virus particularly to the elderly, in the case of a balik kampung exodus are very real.

“Risks associated with crowding at R&R stations and failure of social distancing by travellers during this exodus and their subsequent return to urban areas will also need to be taken into consideration,” AMM said in a statement.

“Responsible behaviour in adhering to social distancing measures is required of everyone until a vaccine is made available. For this year at least, be it Ramadan, Aidilfitri or even Haj gatherings — there is a need for control, monitoring and possible banning of these gatherings.”

Malaysia is still seeing a rise in positive cases on a daily basis and to date, there have been 4,119 positive Covid-19 cases, with 65 deaths.

Most of the deaths are made up by the elderly with a history of medical problems.

“A premature withdrawal or excessive relaxation of MCO restrictions will potentially undo all the good that has been achieved by staying home these past four weeks,” the statement continued.

“The war against Covid-19 is far from over — many sacrifices have and will continue to be made this year.”

The Academy of Medicine of Malaysia, embracing 11 Colleges and 15 Chapters, is a registered body representing all the medical specialists in Malaysia.

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