KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 1 — The National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma) is prepared to reactivate the Low-Risk Covid-19 Quarantine and Treatment Centre at the Malaysia Agro Exposition Park Serdang (MAEPS) if the number of beds in existing health facilities is insufficient.
Nadma director-general Datuk Dr Aminuddin Hassim, however said, the opening of the centre is subject to the Health Ministry’s (MOH) decision.
He said the agency was currently assisting MOH in increasing the number of beds at existing health facilities such as the Kuala Lumpur Hospital, the National Leprosy Control Centre at Sungai Buloh Hospital and the Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital.
“We are currently making use of existing facilities (in the hospitals) and looking into ways to centralise services. If we were to open MAEPS, we need 670 workers, but if we use the existing hospitals we already have the manpower.
“At the hospitals we have labouratories to conduct experiments or tests. But if at MAEPS we have to bring all the facilities there. If necessary, we will take three to four days to start operation because we have the experience,” he said when appearing as guest on Bernama TV’s Ruang Bicara programme titled ‘Disaster Management During Covid-19 Pandemic’.
On flood preparations, Amidnuddin admitted this year would be different taking into account the current Covid-19 situation.
He said Nadma would serve as coordinator in flood related matters nationwide to ensure that planning could be organised and coordinated smoothly.
“This is the perfect storm. InsyaAllah, we can handle the flood preparation together, (however) when we are talking about the Covid-19 SOP (standard operating procedures), we have discussed this with the agencies involved as well as conducted simulations.
“The simulations are important to be able improve what we have planned as chaos will escalate in the event of disaster...there are some who would refuse to go to temporary evacuation centres (PPS) because they are afraid of leaving their belongings... we have to expect that,” he said.
Following that, he said Nadma has drawn up several action plans such as the SOP before, during and after the flood victims are allowed to return home from their respective PPS.
“For example, when they are instructed to go to a PPS, they have to wear face masks and ensure physical distancing. Although it is going to be quite difficult, we will get the agencies involved to help,” he said. — Bernama