Dr Noor Hisham: Index cases of 23 Covid-19 clusters nationwide were recent travellers from Sabah

Health Ministry officers conduct Covid-19 screening on passengers arriving from Sabah at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) September 28, 2020. — Bernama pic
Health Ministry officers conduct Covid-19 screening on passengers arriving from Sabah at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) September 28, 2020. — Bernama pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 13 — A total of 23 Covid-19 clusters were caused nationwide by index cases who had a history of travelling to Sabah, revealed Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

He said the numbers represent the total amount of clusters detected from travellers leaving the state since September 22, with a total of 394 positive cases detected to date from the 18,478 individuals tested.

“Even though the Health Ministry has conducted Covid-19 screenings against all travellers from Sabah since September 27, 2020 and issued Home Surveillance Orders until a negative result is provided, cases and clusters related to this group are still being reported,” he said in his daily press conference.

Dr Noor Hisham went on to explain how 228 of 57.9 per cent of positive Covid-19 cases from travellers leaving Sabah were recorded before September 27, with the remaining 166 infections recorded after that date.

The government implemented mandatory testing at all entry points for travellers coming from Sabah from September 27 until a negative test result was obtained.

However, since October 11, travellers arriving from Sabah are required to undergo the full 14-day home quarantine. 

Additionally, Dr Noor Hisham announced six new clusters detected over the last 24 hours, four in Sabah, and one each in Selangor and Penang, with a total of 70 currently active clusters nationwide.

Two of the new clusters in Sabah were detected in Tawau, first the Semarak cluster whose index case was local infection number-12,200 who tested positive on October 3.

Contact tracing and testing on 18 close contacts yielded 13 more positive cases as five await their test results.

The other cluster in Tawau was named the Sabindo cluster, whose index case was local infection number-12,897 who also tested positive on October 3, a total of 75 close contacts were detected and tested.

Further testing detected an additional 13 cases, with 51 people testing negative and 11 more awaiting their results.

The other two Sabah clusters are teh Bina cluster in Beaufort and the Bestari cluster in Sandakan.

The Bina cluster’s index case was local infection number-15,575 who tested positive on October 10, where 58 close contacts located and tested yielded 13 more Covid-19 infections with 45 testing negative.

As for the Bestari cluster, its index was local infection number-14,830 who was tested for showing symptoms which yielded a positive result on October 10.

Some 44 close contacts were later located and tested with 18 of them testing positive while the rest await their results.

In Selangor, the new Bah Kenangan cluster has to date seen a total of 38 people tested with 18 turning out positive, 15 negative, and five more who are waiting for their results.

Over in Penang, the new Penjara Jawi cluster was detected after three detainees tested positive on October 11 before they were sent to the Timur Laut Remand Prison.

To date a total of 226 people have been detected as close contacts and tested, with three positives detected, 61 testing negative and 162 more still awaiting their results.


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