KUALA LUMPUR, May 5 — The Malaysian government should ensure the continuity of the MySejahtera contact tracing application by retrofitting existing features, instead of retiring it entirely, the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) said today.

The usage of MySejahtera nationwide plunged 73.8 per cent with immediate effect on May 1, and further dwindled by as much as 90 per cent from the date the government lifted the mandatory use of the mobile app to check in their presence at premises.

MMA president Dr Koh Kar Chai said the MySejahtera application could be further developed to enable storing of existing medical treatment records that can be accessed by healthcare professionals to ensure continuity of care.

However, Dr Koh said any additional proposed features to be introduced in the app must obtain public approval since the matter would concern patient confidentiality. 

“The app can be useful as we embrace more digital conveniences in healthcare but it can only be possible when people feel assured that their privacy and personal data is one hundred percent secure,” he said in a brief response to Malay Mail.

A recent check on the same data depository in the Health Ministry’s Github portal showed a stark difference in the statistics for daily check-ins, unique locations checked in, and unique users logged between before and after the enforcement dates of the revised standard operating procedures.

On May 2, Malaysia recorded just 1,787,442 daily nationwide check-ins compared to 4,562,842 total check-ins on May 1.

The number further saw a reduction on May 3, with 1,496,241 check-ins logged, a difference of 291,201.

Separately, the number of unique accounts also dropped from 2,857,054 recorded on May 1 to 1,264,470 unique users logged on May 2.

A similar reduction in unique users was observed on May 3, with 1,084,600 users registered or a difference of 179,870 individuals.

Previously, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said the application has been updated with a new feature to track hotspots of infectious diseases, including the hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD).

Called the Infectious Disease Tracker, it allows users to see areas designated as hotspots of diseases apart from Covid-19, such as measles, rabies, HFMD and dengue fever.

The MySejahtera mandate is only one of several Covid-19 measures the federal government introduced and is now rolling back as the nation transitions towards endemicity.

While the mandatory QR code scanning through MySejahtera and vaccination status verification before entering premises have been discontinued, business owners are still required to screen patrons who are under Covid-19 quarantine.

Other mandates that have been relaxed include wearing face masks outdoors. It is now only a must indoors, including inside public transport.

However, many Malaysians have been erring on the side of caution so far and can still be seen keeping their face masks on when outdoors.