KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 — The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) today urged the government to consider seeking assistance from private healthcare providers to bolster its efforts in combating the raging Covid-19 pandemic.
MMA president Prof Datuk Dr Subramaniam Muniandy, in a statement today, also thanked the Yang di-Pertuan Agong for declaring the nationwide state of Emergency and even endorsed the government’s decision to re-enforce the movement control order (MCO) in states that have been badly hit by the virus.
Dr Subramaniam penned that a second MCO was indeed the right and necessary option for the government having factored in the consistent rise in new infections, with clusters emerging within the community and how the highly infectious B117 strain of the virus has been detected in Malaysia.
He then encouraged the government and Health Ministry to engage help in terms of manpower and assets from the private healthcare sector to ease their burden and bolster their mitigation efforts.
“We also urge the Health Ministry to work with private healthcare as the increasing patient load of Covid-19 cases at government hospitals may also affect the system and management of non-Covid-19 patients.
“The outsourcing of healthcare services such as Non Communicable Disease (NCD) management to general practitioners (GPs) and cancer treatment to private hospitals will allow public hospitals to focus its resources on managing Covid-19,” Dr Subramanian said.
“MMA will provide support in any way it can to assist the Health Ministry and the government manage the Covid-19 situation in the country,” he added.
This comes as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah earlier today expressed his consent to a state of Emergency enforced in the country until August 1, or until the current wave of Covid-19 subsides.
The announcement was made just hours after Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced a fresh batch of 14-day MCOs in six states, conditional MCOs in six other states and the recovery MCO in Perlis and Sarawak.
Muhyiddin, following the King’s announcement, also gave a public address where he assured that economic activities would be able to continue under the Emergency, with it mostly affecting the executive branch and Parliamentary sessions, with the judiciary also set to function as usual.
The prime minister had said the Emergency declaration was not a military coup and that no curfew would be implemented, with the government branches and agencies functioning as usual under what is allowed for during the MCO.
The MMA today in their statement also reminded the public to adhere to the set guidelines and SOPs during the various stages and versions of the MCO to break the chain of infection and flatten the exponential curve.
“The whole country can be made to pay a heavy price if just one person lets their guard down; the fight against Covid-19 is a collective responsibility.
“Going forward, MMA hopes the government will adopt a whole of society and whole of nation approach in managing the pandemic,” Dr Subramaniam said.