GEORGE TOWN, Oct 5 — Penang will be adding up to 20 more intensive care unit (ICU) beds for Covid-19 cases soon even though the trend of Covid-19 cases in the state is going down, said Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

He said the state Health Department has shared data to show a decrease in cases in the state but the state government, along with the Health Ministry, will continue to prepare for any eventuality.

“In the medium to long term, another four to six ICU beds will be added at Penang General Hospital soon based on a needs basis,” he said in a statement today.

In addition to that, four ICU beds will be added to the field hospital and 10 more ICU beds at the Kepala Batas Hospital will be ready by the end of October.

He said the Penang General Hospital has a total of 65 ICU beds as of October 4.

Chow said the authorities are now in the process of planning the equipment and staff needs for the additional ICU beds and this involves close collaboration between the state and federal government.

As for the vaccination of civil servants, including education frontliners, Chow believes the respective departments will have to take the necessary action to ensure the safety of everyone, especially children at educational institutions in the state.

Meanwhile, on walk-in vaccinations for teenagers aged 12 and above, which starts tomorrow, Chow said the walk-in session is now open to everyone in Penang.

“All eligible individuals who have not received their vaccination date can walk in to any of the Covid-19 vaccination centres in the state, including teenagers between 12 and 17 years old,” he said.

The 10 PPVs that will be operating as usual to dispense first and second doses of the Covid-19 vaccine are Tapak Pesta, Kompleks Sukan Balik Pulau and SPICE Arena on the island; and on the mainland, Dewan Millennium, Pusat Konvensyen Perda, Seberang Perai SP Area, Tapak Expo Seberang Jaya, Vangohh Eminent, Dewan Serbaguna Jawi and Dewan Serbaguna Sungai Bakap.

He said to ensure the vaccination process of adults and teenagers runs smoothly, the Health Ministry will fully manage operations at the PPVs later.