Make use of civil society to beat Covid-19, ex-Johor assemblyman tells govt

Dr Boo stressed that more Covid-19 patients would die before they could be admitted to hospital if no drastic action is taken. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Dr Boo stressed that more Covid-19 patients would die before they could be admitted to hospital if no drastic action is taken. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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JOHOR BARU, Feb 9 — Johor DAP state committee member Dr Boo Cheng Hau today urged the government to revise its Covid-19 strategy and mobilise civil society to prevent further infections.

He suggested both the federal and state governments engage with guilds and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) among others to better combat the epidemic.

“This includes recruiting and training volunteers for transporting Stage 1 and 2 Covid-19 patients with no or mild symptoms between homes and Covid-19 Assessment Centres (CACs) and  Covid-19 Quarantine and Treatment Centres,” he said in a Facebook post.

Dr Boo, a general medical practitioner with more than 30 years of experience who had been infected with the coronavirus last year, stressed that more Covid-19 patients would die before they could be admitted to hospital if no drastic action is taken.

“This is due to an acute shortage of hospital beds and care, medical staffing, ambulances and transport between patients’ homes and the CAC, lack of close and proper home care monitoring and early detection surveillance by large-scale testing campaigns,” he said.

Dr Boo also urged the Johor government to mobilise the use of the state’s Johor Public Transport Corporation’s resources to assist in transporting Covid-19 patients between home and CACs or Covid-19 Quarantine and Treatment Centres for early clinical assessment and treatment.

“I also urge the Johor government to emulate the Selangor government in mobilising state, local governments’ and NGOs’ resources in providing financial assistance in carrying out routine Covid-19 screening fortnightly and subsidising free vaccination programmes among high-risk and low income groups that include low income local and foreign workers and old folks homes.

“This is a crucial move to revive the state’s economy in the nearest future,” said the former Skudai assemblyman and Johor Opposition chief.

Dr Boo has written several Facebook posts about the Covid-19 pandemic since the start of the first movement control order in March last year.

The politician had contracted Covid-19 last December and was admitted to Permai Hospital for treatment.

He has since made a full recovery and has been actively engaging others on precautions against the coronavirus infection.

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