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KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 30 — The Health Ministry today said it has sent out teams to the four Sabah districts currently under a targeted enhanced movement control order (TEMCO) due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with plans to have 365 more medical personnel stationed throughout the state from October.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the ministry has mobilised teams to provide assistance to the districts of Tawau, Lahad Datu, Semporna and Kunak to help curb the spread of the Covid-19 virus there.
Such mobilisation of teams to provide assistance from within Sabah to the affected districts had been carried out since the spike of Covid-19 cases there, he said.
“Besides that, the Health Ministry had and is continuing to mobilise aid teams in stages from Sarawak, Labuan and Semenanjung Malaysia since September 23, 2020,” he said in a statement today.
When breaking down the dispatch of such assistance as of September 29, Dr Noor Hisham said the teams had assisted in tracing close contacts of Covid-19 patients, carried out Covid-19 screening on the field of the community, and taking care of quarantine centres and hospitals.
Apart from that, 10 microbiology science officers and five lab technicians were sent to Hospital Tawau, Hospital Lahad Datu, as well as three locations in Sabah’s state capital Kota Kinabalu — Hospital Queen Elizabeth, Hospital Wanita dan Kanak-kanak Likas and the Kota Kinabalu public health lab — to help in the Covid-19 test process in the labs, he said.
The Health Ministry has also ordered 72 trainee nurses to be on duty at hospitals throughout Sabah, namely Hospital Kunak, Hospital Queen Elizabeth, Hospital Tenom, Hospital Beluran, Hospital Keningau, Hospital Wanita dan Kanak-kanak Likas and Hospital Kota Belud, he said.
“From October 2020, a total of 140 Medical Officers and 225 Assistant Medical Officers will be placed at the Sabah State Health Department according to vacancy and current service requirements, including at clinics, hospitals and District Health Offices throughout Sabah,” he said.
Dr Noor Hisham said there would be continuous evaluation of the human resources requirements in Sabah to assist in controlling the spread of Covid-19 cases there as well as to ensure continuity of healthcare services in the state.
He said that the welfare of healthcare and medical workers will also have to be prioritised to ensure that they are able to carry out their duties well, including in terms of logistics, training and personal protective equipment (PPE) requirements in line with the duties that they are tasked to do.
Dr Noor Hisham’s statement on the status of deployment of medical personnel in Sabah comes after a spike in Covid-19 cases there as well as the detection of multiple clusters there over the past month.