by AZREEN HANI/ FILE PIX

Nationwide movement control order (MCO) can be avoided but Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin should consider hiring health officers for Covid-19 screening, says former deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye.

Dr Lee said the transmission of Covid-19 can be controlled with targeted PKPD (TEMCO), in addition to mass testing and dtection, testing and isolation of close contacts within 48 hours.

“The government should establish a nationwide network as a special staff for immediate contact tracking where its members consist of 10,000 additional members in the Public Health Division, Health Ministry in collaboration with local community leaders,” he said.

Dr Lee said these special officers can be trained and guided by Public Health Officers for contact tracking tasks, to ensure contacts comply with the Quarantine Order, to ensure business compliance with SOPs and to assist in mass testing among others.

“They can be taken from the unemployed Graduates and those who lost their jobs during the COVID 19 pandemic,” he said adding that with an estimated cost of RM2,500 per month for each employee, the total cost would only be RM 300 million a year.

This would be much lower than the loss incurred from the lockdown, he added.

“I appeal to the Prime Minister to order the recruitment of the special staff on a contract basis at an immediate rate during the special announcement on 11/1/2021 (Monday),” Dr Lee said.

Last October, Muhyiddin had said that Malaysia should not be dragged into another MCO as it will hugely impact the economy.

He said in the event of a second MCO, the government will have to provide greater assistance to the people compared to the amount given previously.

“Do not hope for MCO to happen again as the burden was enormous,” he said then.

Read our previous report here:

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Source:
https://themalaysianreserve.com/2021/01/09/avoid-lockdown-hire-more-health-officers-for-virus-screening/

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