H1N1: Time to get real serious

your say‘The government has no choice but to buck up now and implement some practical and serious measures to control the spread of this deadly virus.’

On H1N1: We're at alarming stage, says Muhyiddin

Yuvan Nara: Information on hot spots or locations on the rampant spread of the H1N1 flu virus should have been done from the start. It is long overdue. The government seems to be very slow in showing its response and reaction to contain this pandemic.

The government has no choice but to buck up now and implement some practical and serious measures to control the spread of this deadly virus. Otherwise, Malaysians will face nothing short of a national disaster in the coming months.

Sheila Santharamohana: Schools need to be more vigilant about students absences and must request parents to inform them if their child(ren) have the H1N1 or any flu-like symptoms.

Currently, school administrations have been reluctant to investigate the rising number of the sick, thus contributing to the spread of the disease. Likewise, parents should be duty bound to report if their child(ren) have the virus or flu-like symptoms. Such reports will give a truer picture of the situation.

My son and sister were both suspected H1N1 patients: both were infected locally in schools but their respective schools chose to stonewall citing the fact they had not been tested and so were not 'confirmed' cases.

Teachers and administrations should get students to bring in hand sanitisers and have special assemblies or presentations by health officials to teach basic hygiene. Provision of tissue papers and subsidised face masks is another step. Think of the other children in school, please. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away.

Wong Kwok Chee: I fully support the DPM to release the list of H1N1 hot spots. As of now, all our queries to the school head fall on deaf ears - they dare not deny or confirm. Better still, update us on how many students are confirmed or suspected per school - that way, we as parents can decide to let our child go to school or not.

The advice from my child's school now is "if you think it is not safe to come, then don’t come. We cannot close the school forever". I also call on the DPM to really consider extending the coming school holiday to two weeks. This would really stop the spread in schools. But parents please take heed also, do not go on overseas holidays...

Satria Asia:
Stop pussy-footing lah. Close schools, colleges and universities, cinemas, restrict travel and so on ... Don't let your vested interest get in the way of the public good. Mumbai closed schools and cinemas with 'just' 16 cases!

John Smith: Closing schools is not a small matter - think of the impact on parents who have to go to work. There is not enough childcare provision available for all children to be out of school at the same time. The only fair answer is for employers to be required to give additional paid leave to parents until the schools reopen, and for the government to reimburse the salary costs involved.

Nedunchelian Vengu:
H1N1 spread in small clusters. School kids always move in groups. So to avoid the spread of this deadly virus, close down the schools nationwide for a month. Are we looking for a rocket scientist to figure out this? This is the problem when you have a dietician as our health minister...

Dr Jacob George: Despite the call by the incompetent Health Minister Liow Tiong Lai on pharmacies and other business outlets not to take advantage of the situation by inflating the price of surgical masks and other medical necessities, the prices are skyrocketing. A mask is now sold at around RM3 which used to be just around 80 sen!

This morning I had informed the Domestic Trade and Consumers Affairs Ministry secretary-general that we must act to stop this wild greed and profiteering and I am certain the ministry will act. I urge Malaysian consumers not to also indulge in 'panic buying' - it does not help.

Swee Aun Teoh:
Before we jump on the bandwagon and deplete all pharmacies in Malaysia from face masks, let us stop and ask ourselves whether face masks are really an efficient way to prevent infection. In its published guidelines on preventing H1N1 infection in a community setting, WHO did not recommend face masks.

In fact, we will increase the chances of infection if we wear face masks without knowing the proper way of handling it. For more information, click here. Don't get panic and buy everyone in your family a face mask. Rather practise hygiene, wash your hands often and avoid crowded places such as the Merdeka Day celebration.

Khairul Nizam Taha: (Referring to Info Minister Rais Yatim's remarks) as of Aug 11, UK only have 41 reported death. Only USA and Argentina each having more than 300 deaths. The British government has also warned that deaths from H1N1 flu this winter could be between 19,000 and 65,000 in the UK alone.

Chua Seu Kheng:
For the vaccination to be effective, it has to be administered as soon as the symptoms appear. Try to get medical help if you are down with all the symptoms.

My daughter was down with flu/cough/sore throat/fever on Aug 12, took her to a private clinic, not better the next day, took her to a private hospital in Kota Bharu. Requested for a throat swab, the doctor told us forget about it because in Malaysia there are only two centres that can test H1N1 and it takes two weeks the earliest for the result to be out.

She further said Tamiflu would be be given for very serious cases but our health minister said if you have persistent fever for two days, the drug should be immediately given. Now should I be down with a mild H1N1, how many people will I be infecting if no test can be done. With no proper disease control we are going to lead this whole country to disaster.