28/03/2020 10:30 PM

PUTRAJAYA, March 28 -- The Ministry of Health (MOH) today received 100,000 test kits for COVID-19 from China.

Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the test kits, approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, would be evaluated for its accuracy.

“I was assured by the (Chinese) ambassador (to Malaysia) that this test kit is more accurate than the one that we tested,” he told a COVID-19 daily press conference here today.

He also said that the MOH was currently evaluating test kit from South Korea which was received last night.

In a related development, Dr Noor Hisham said it was still too early to talk on COVID-19 situation during Ramadan, which is expected to begin on April 24.

“If you can stay at home and break the chain of the infection and can reduce the infection, then we will be in a much better situation compared to JP Morgan or Malaysian Institute of Economic Research's (MIER) reports,” he said.

Dr Noor Hisham said JP Morgan expected Malaysia to record peak cases in mid-April of around 6,300 cases while MIER prediction was much higher at 8,900 cases.

“It all depends on us and the public now, if we can work together as one and look into the message, everyone has a role to play,” he added.

Dr Noor Hisham also emphasised that MOH and relevant authorities were trying their best to bring down the number of COVID-19 cases in the country.

“Time will tell (whether the predictions are true or not) … everyone in the Ministry of Health, we are working round the clock to make sure that we can deliver and bring down the cases and perhaps prove the prediction is not correct,” he said.

Meanwhile, asked on a suicide case in a hospital, allegedly due to the COVID-19 infection, Dr Noor Hisham confirmed that the individual was tested negative for the virus.

“There was a suicide case reported, but he was not a COVID-19 patient.

“Any patient admitted to the intensive care unit will be tested for COVID-19, maybe he had other health complications but definitely not COVID-19,” he said.

In another development, Dr Noor Hisham urged the remaining 5,084 tabligh convention participants to undergo screening for COVID-19.

“We need to find these 5,084 people, they are not tested yet. Hope we can test them in time. We are working closely with the police to encourage them to come to our clinics and then we will do the test for them,” he said.


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