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Battle Against COVID-19 Is Not Over – Dr Noor Hisham

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PUTRAJAYA, Dec 31 —The war to curb the COVID-19 pandemic is not over, and the battle is getting tougher as it requires the integration of the people and Health Ministry (MOH) to fight the pandemic effectively.

Health director-general, Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the efforts of MOH in containing COVID-19 transmission in the country would continue and public health facilities have so far been able to take on the pandemic.

He was speaking at the launch of a coffee book titled “The Fight Against Uncertainty : Hospital Services Journey In Combating COVID-19”, which was conducted virtually here today.

While wishing all Malaysians a happy new year, Dr Noor Hisham again reminded the people to comply with the standard operating procedure (SOP) such as observing physical distancing, wearing face mask, washing hands frequently and avoiding crowded places while gathering with the family to welcome the new year.

“If possible, do not gather, and if need be, there should not be more than 10 persons and adhere to MOH SOP,” he said in the ceremony which was also attended by Health deputy director-general (Medical), Datuk Dr Rohaizat Yon.

Dr Noor Hisham also thanked all MOH staff, frontliners as well as media personnel for jointly combating COVID-19 for one year.

“The battle is a mentally and physically tiring for MOH staff and the people. We have not won and hope in 2021 we could break COVID-19 infection chain in the country with the cooperation of the people,” he said.

On the coffee table book, Dr Noor Hisham said it is a meaningful publication as it recounts the journey of the frontliners in fighting the disease over the year which could be shared with the future generation.

Published by the Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre (CPRC) Hospital Service, Medical Programme, the 158-page book is compilation of articles and photographs on the battle against COVID-19 pandemic thus far.

A total of 350 copies were printed with contribution from the World Health Organisation (WHO) and they would be distributed to MOH, state health directors as well as other ministries and agencies, universities and the Association of Private Hospital of Malaysia (APHM).

Members of the public can read the coffee table book by surfing MOH official website.

Source: BERNAMA

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“I Chose To Get Vaccinated With The Second Group of Frontliners Here” – Tun Dr. Mahathir

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The vaccination program for COVID-19 is going smoothly and according to plan lately in Malaysia. One little problem that this country has would be to convince many people to take the vaccine because as many people know, there are certain individuals that are still refusing to get the vaccine even though it is for their own safety. There are misinformation everywhere that makes them even unconvinced to got the vaccine injection. Luckily, many people who have taken the vaccine prove that it will definitely do not bring any negative consequences towards the body.

One of them is Malaysia’s former prime minister that is Tun Dr. Mahathir who is a 96-year-old individual and he has finally received his first COVID-19 vaccination injection today at the Vaccination Centre located in Langkawi where he is the MP there. Tun Dr. Mahathir is actually categorized under the high-risk category individuals and his action has proved that there is definitely nothing to be worried about by receiving the vaccine.

According to his tweet, Tun Dr. Mahathir stated that he chose to get vaccinated for COVID-19 together with the second group of frontliners here in Langkawi after all the ones in the first group have been vaccinated before.

He said, “As a senior citizen, I want to ask those not only in the same age group as mine but also the younger ones to get vaccinated when their turn comes. This is an initiative that all of us must support”. He also added, “We want more people to be vaccinated to help curb the Covid19 pandemic. Alhamdulillah after the injection I did not feel anything unusual”.

Sources: Twitter Tun Dr. Mahathir

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Two Individuals Infected With Nigerian Covid-19 Variant In Malaysia Discovered – MOH

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Recently, the Ministry Of Health Malaysia (MOH) has discovered the first two cases of individuals that got infected with the Nigerian Variant of SARS-CoV-2 or also known as B1.525 in this country. The detected cases are actually from two foreigners who just arrived in Malaysia from Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Both of them were found to be tested Covid-19 positive through the RT PCR Covid-19 swab test.

For a better recognition, The Institute for Medical Research (IMR) then performed a full genome sequencing as it takes into account both of the foreigner’s travel history. The Nigerian COVID-19 variant was first detected in the UK and also Nigeria in the month of December 2020.

MOH also stated that these discovered Nigerian variants can cause an increase in the likelihood as well as a possible decrease in the immune response. Worry not because MOH reassured that IMR and CPRC will continue to monitor the development of the virus mutation and to inform the public from time to time.

Other than that, they also reminded that even though the national immunization program is going smoothly, public health actions are still required as herd immunity has still not been achieved yet.

Sources: Twitter MOH

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UK To Fast-Track Modified Coronavirus Vaccines To Fight New Variants

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LONDON, March 5 – Future vaccines that have been tweaked to deal with new coronavirus variants will be fast-tracked for authorisation, Britain’s medicines and health care regulator announced Thursday, reported Xinhua news agency.

“We have a clear goal that future vaccine modifications that respond to new variants of coronavirus can be made in the shortest possible time without compromising safety, quality or effectiveness,” June Raine, chief executive of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), said in a statement.

According to the new guidance, the three-phase safety trials required for the original coronavirus vaccines won’t be needed but manufacturers must provide robust evidence that the modified vaccine triggers an immune response.

Christian Schneider, chief scientific officer at the MHRA, said: “The public should be confident that no vaccine would be approved unless the expected high standards of safety, quality and effectiveness are met.”

Currently, both the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines have reportedly shown to be effective against the variant that first emerged in Britain late last year.

However, experts have raised concerns over the efficacy of current vaccines in the variants rst found in South Africa and Brazil, which have both been detected in Britain.

Six cases of P1 variant related to Brazil have been found in Britain, including three in England and three in Scotland.

More than 20.7 million people in Britain have been given the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine, according to the latest official figures.

At present, England is under the third national lockdown since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country. Similar restriction measures are also in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

On Feb 22, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced his long-anticipated “roadmap” exiting the lockdown. Schools in England will reopen from Monday next week as the first part of the four-step plan, which Johnson said was designed to be “cautious but irreversible”.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States have been racing against time to roll out coronavirus vaccines.

Source: BERNAMA

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