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PUTRAJAYA, April 5 — A total of 20 COVID-19 clusters were detected in the education sector from March 20 until yesterday, with the highest number of infections coming from the Paloh Rambai cluster in Kelantan.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said that particular cluster involved teachers from several schools, among them Sekolah Kebangsaan (SK) Seri Ketereh, SK Kok Lanas, SK Pangkal Kalong and Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Kok Lanas.
Until March 25, a total of 347 individuals have been screened, with 20 testing positive for the virus in the Paloh Rambai cluster, he said.
Dr Adham said there were also education sector clusters recorded in Johor, Sabah, Negeri Sembilan and Sarawak.
“The spread of the virus (in the education sector) were through colleagues or social contact,” he told a joint media conference with Coordinating Minister for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme Khairy Jamaluddin here today.
Face-to-face school sessions which prior to this had been suspended due to an increase in COVID-19 cases were resumed in stages on March 1.
“Compliance of SOPs (standard operating procedures) and the practice of new norms must not only be carried out in schools but also out of school and in the community,” Dr Adham said.
Dr Adham said once a COVID-19 case is detected in a school, district health department workers will carry out a risk assessment and evaluation, after which the school concerned would be advised as to whether it needs to be temporarily closed or not.
He said the health team then would then probe further on the cases and possible clusters, conduct contact tracing and oversee cleaning and disinfection in the affected schools.