COVID-19 | Malaysia has reported 62 new cases of Covid-19 in the 24 hours up to noon today, which is the highest single-day increase since the recovery movement control order (MCO) was implemented.
The last time the country recorded more cases was on June 4, when 277 cases were reported on that day. The recovery MCO began on June 10.
The Health Ministry said 56 of the new cases today were locally acquired while six were imported.
Of the local cases, 50 of them are part of the Benteng LD in Sabah where an outbreak has been detected at Tawau Prison and the Lahad Datu district police headquarters (IPD).
“Based on risk analysis, the factor behind Covid-19 transmission in this cluster is the cramped and crowded lockup facilities.
“It is found that physically distancing is hard to put in practice. This is the main contributor to the spread of Covid-19 amongst prisoners.
“Thus, adherence to standard operating procedures is important and must be adhered to regardless of venue,” said the ministry’s director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.
The cluster originated from two undocumented migrants who were held at IPD Lahad Datu on Aug 24 before being tested positive for Covid-19 on Aug 31.
Contact tracing efforts subsequently led to 1,404 people being tested over a week, of which 66 (4.7 percent) tested positive. Sixty-four of those cases involved prisoners, while the remainder involved a prison officer and his one-year-old nephew.
In terms of nationality, 30 cases (45.5 percent) involved Malaysians, while the remaining 36 (54.5 percent) were non-citizens.
In addition, a new cluster dubbed the “Sungai cluster” has been detected at a private hospital in Kedah.
Noor Hisham said a healthcare worker at the facility (Case 9,455) experienced Covid-19 symptoms on Aug 30 but did not seek treatment. A Covid-19 test was conducted on Sept 5 and was found to be positive.
The second case (Case 9,456) is also a healthcare worker at the same facility and is a close contact with the index case.
She experienced symptoms on Sept 5 and sought treatment at the same facility. A Covid-19 test returned a positive result. Both have been admitted to the Sultanah Bahiyah Hospital, Alor Setar, for treatment.
Noor Hisham said 55 others have since been tested for Covid-19 in this cluster and their results are still pending.
Apart from the two clusters, one new case was detected via contact tracing in the Telaga cluster, which also involved a healthcare facility in Kedah.
Another case was detected when testing a patient, who showed symptoms, at a dental clinic in Alor Setar, and one case was detected in a patient with severe acute respiratory infection at Lahad Datu Hospital, Sabah.
Contact tracing of Case 9,397 - who tested positive for Covid-19 on Sept 5 when seeking treatment for acute gastroenteritis at a private hospital in Penang - has led to a new case being identified in Penang.
As for the six imported cases, Noor Hisham said two originated from Turkey, two from Bangladesh, one from Indonesia, and one from Egypt. They comprise two Malaysians and four foreigners.
Nine patients have recovered from the disease and have been discharged today. This leaves 207 cases still active, out of 9,459 cases reported in Malaysia since the beginning of the pandemic.
Of these, six are being treated in intensive care units. Four of them also need ventilator support.
The death toll remains unchanged with 128 fatalities reported so far.