By Melati Mohd Ariff
This is a round-up of COVID-19 related matters in Malaysia and globally from Nov 28 up to 8.30 pm today. In Malaysia, case numbers have exceeded 70,000 and globally, the virus has infected nearly 65 million people and caused about 1.5 million deaths. More than 200 countries and territories are affected by the pandemic.
KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama) – Existing active and new clusters are the chief contributors to the daily spike in new COVID-19 cases in Malaysia.
During the week under review, new daily cases mostly hovered around four-digit figures. As of today, there are 188 active clusters with 49 of them reporting new cases. A total of 193 clusters have ended so far.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah today announced eight new clusters in Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Pahang, Perak, Selangor and Kelantan. The new clusters reported a total of 104 cases.
Among the most dominant clusters that are pushing up daily cases to over 1,000 is the Teratai cluster, first announced by the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Nov 7 with 74 positive cases.
This cluster involved Top Glove Corporation Bhd factory workers in the districts of Klang, Kuala Selangor, Petaling and Hulu Langat.
The steep hike in cases forced the government to enforce an Enhanced Movement Control Order (EMCO) on Nov 17 at the workers’ hostels in Meru, Klang. On Nov 25, the government ordered 28 Top Glove factories to halt their operations temporarily.
The highest number of COVID-19 infections reported by this cluster was 1,511 on Nov 24. The same day, Malaysia recorded a record total of 2,188 new cases nationwide.
On Tuesday (Dec 1), the Teratai cluster accounted for 778 of the 891 new cases reported in Selangor. On Wednesday, Dr Noor Hisham said the cluster has already spread to the community outside the Top Glove workers’ hostels.
He told a media briefing that MOH has detected 150 infections in the community that were linked to the Teratai cluster.
Top Glove has a workforce of 11,125. Its management has been ordered to carry out screening on 2,263 workers who do not reside in the hostels or quarters provided by the company.
As of now, out of the 6,609 individuals screened, 5,083 tested positive for COVID-19.
For the record, during the week under review (Nov 28-Dec 4), a total of 32 new clusters have emerged – today eight, yesterday four, Wednesday five, Tuesday two, Monday three, Sunday four and Saturday six.
DAILY CASES, OTHER RELATED CASES
Over the 24-hour period up to noon today, 1,141 new COVID-19 cases were reported, bringing the cumulative number of infections in the country to 70,236.
On the global front, Malaysia has overtaken Singapore to occupy the 83nd spot in the list of countries swept by the pandemic. Singapore is on the 86th spot (last week 83rd) with 58,242 cases and 29 fatalities.
As of today, Malaysia’s active cases stood at 10,799. The breakdown for this week’s new cases is as follows: yesterday 1,075, Wednesday 851, Tuesday 1,472, Monday 1,212, Saturday 1,309 and Sunday 1,315.
Recoveries remained high with 1,144 patients discharged today, bringing Malaysia’s total number of recovered cases to 59,061 (83.8 percent of total COVID-19 cases).
The breakdown for this week’s recovered cases is as follows: yesterday 948, Wednesday 658, Tuesday 1,552, Monday 2,112, Sunday 1,333 and Saturday 1,110.
No deaths were reported today and the death toll remains at 376.
The breakdown for this week’s deaths is as follows: yesterday 11, Wednesday two, Tuesday three, Monday three, Sunday three and Saturday four.
Currently, 129 patients are in the intensive care unit with 53 requiring respiratory aid.
According to the details of the new COVID-19 cases reported today, Sabah accounted for 320 cases, 61 of them from existing clusters.
Selangor accounted for 320 cases (including one imported case), out of which 155 were from existing clusters.
Kuala Lumpur reported 256 cases, 241 of which were from existing clusters. It also reported three new clusters, namely Tapak Bina Muda cluster, Tapak Bina Galeri cluster and Bukit Dalam cluster.
The Tapak Bina Muda cluster involves the districts of Titiwangsa, Lembah Pantai and Kepong and has recorded 11 positive cases. The Tapak Bina Galeri cluster involves the districts of Lembah Pantai and Cheras and has 16 cases.
The Bukit Dalam cluster involves Lembah Pantai and has 13 cases.
Johor reported 68 cases, 47 of which were from existing clusters. It reported one new cluster, Cempaka, involving the districts of Kulai and Kluang and has 10 positive cases.
Penang recorded 48 cases, 26 of which were from existing clusters; and Perak 47 cases, 40 of which were from existing cluster. Perak also reported a new cluster, Sungai Cincin, which reported 15 cases.
Kedah has 24 cases, 20 of which were from existing clusters; and Kelantan 20 cases, including 19 from the new Huma cluster.
Negeri Sembilan reported 15 cases; and Pahang 15 cases from two new clusters, Jalan Genting and Atabara.
Labuan reported three cases, Putrajaya two, Perlis one, and Sarawak one imported case.
GLOBAL COVID-19 STATISTICS
According to CoronaTracker (which cites figures from various agencies including the World Health Organisation), the total number of COVID-19 cases worldwide at the time of writing this article stood at 65,626,723 (61,412,579 cases at the same time last Friday) and 1,513,866 deaths (1,439,993 last Friday). The total number of recoveries stood at 45,462.244.
The United States continues to head the list of badly-hit nations with 14,535,196 cases (13,249,447 last Friday) and 282,829 deaths (269,597 last week).
India is on the second spot with 9,571,780 cases and 139,227 deaths.
Brazil is third with 6,487,516 cases and 175,307 fatalities. Russia is next with 2,375,546 cases and 41,607 deaths, followed by France with 2,257,331 cases and 54,140 deaths.
Another 61 countries have recorded cases exceeding 100,000, namely:
Spain 1,693,591 cases (46,038 deaths), United Kingdom 1,674,134 (60,113), Italy 1,664,829 (58,038), Argentina 1,447,732 (39,305), Colombia 1,343,322 (37,305), Mexico 1,144,643 (108,173), Germany 1,128,742 (18,260), Poland 1,028,610 (18,828), Iran 1,003,494 (49,348), Peru 968,846 (36,104), South Africa 800,872 (21,803), Ukraine 772,760 (12,960), Turkey 733,261 (14,316), Belgium 582,252 (16,911), Iraq 558,767 (12,361), Indonesia 557,877 (17,355), Chile 555,406 (15,519), Holland 538,050 (9,565), Czechia 537,663 (8,641), Romania 492,211 (11,876), Bangladesh 471,739 (6,748), Philippines 435,413 (8,446), Pakistan 406,810 (8,205), Canada 396,270 (12,407), Morocco 368,624 (6,063), Saudi Arabia 358,102 (5,930), Israel 341,042 (2,891), Switzerland 335,660 (5,045), Portugal 303,846 (4,645), Austria 289,461 (3,446), Sweden 266,158 (6,972), Nepal 236,246 (1,538), Hungary 231,844 (5,324), Jordan 227,208 (2,854), Serbia 199,158 (1,765), Ecuador 195,884 (13,612), United Arab Emirates 172,751 (585), Panama 171,219 (3,141), Bulgaria 155,193 (4,503), Japan 152,827 (2,213), Georgia 147,636 (1,387), Dominican Republic 146,009 (2,335), Bolivia 145,186 (8,982), Kuwait 143,574 (884), Costa Rica 142,505 (1,757), Belarus 141,609 (1,181), Qatar 139,477 (239), Croatia 139,415 (1,964), Armenia 138,508 (2,254), Croatia 134,881 (1,916), Kazakhstan 133,887 (1,990), Lebabon 131,297 (1,055), Azerbaijan 129,544 (1,470), Oman 124,145 (1,430), Guatemala 123,460 (4,191), Egypt 116,724 (6,694), Ethiopia 110,984 (1,715), Moldova 110,580 (1,343), Greece 109,655 (2,606), Slovakia 109,226 (898), Honduras 109,144 (2,930) and Venezuela 103,067 (905).
China, where the outbreak was first reported at end-December 2019, is now on the 72nd spot with 86,567 cases while its death toll remains unchanged at 4,634.
In Southeast Asia, the Philippines and Indonesia have joined the countries with more than 100,000 cases. Next is Myanmar with 93,600 cases (last Friday 85,205) and 1,998 deaths (1,846 last Friday).
Singapore now has 58,239 cases while its death toll is 29. Thailand has recorded 4,039 cases while its death toll remains at 60, followed by Vietnam with 1,358 cases and 35 deaths.
Cambodia’s cases rose slightly to 331 and its death tally remains zero. There are no changes to Brunei’s tally of 141 cases and two deaths, and Laos’ 39 cases and zero fatality.
According to the WHO website, its China country office was informed of cases of pneumonia that were detected in Wuhan on Dec 31, 2019. On Jan 7, the Chinese authorities confirmed that the novel coronavirus can be transmitted from human to human.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-COV).
A study of the virus’ genetic sequence suggested similarities to that seen in snakes and bats. China health officials identified the Huanan Seafood Market in Wuhan as the source of the transmission of the coronavirus.
On Feb 11, WHO announced the official name of the virus, COVID-19, which is an acronym for coronavirus 2019 – CO stands for corona, VI for virus and D for disease.
On Jan 30, WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak as a global emergency. By then, it had spread to 18 countries and caused 170 deaths. On March 11, COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by WHO.
WHO has described the COVID-19 outbreak as much more dangerous than the A H1N1 Influenza, also known as Swine Flu.
Swine Flu, which occurred between January 2009 and August 2010, infected more than 1.6 million people and caused 18,449 fatalities.
The International Monetary Fund has warned that the global economic recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic will be worse than the Great Depression of the 1930s.
Translated by Rema Nambiar
Malaysian National News Agency
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