As we’re heading towards the end of the second phase of the Movement Control Order (MCO), some of us may begin to wonder what is Malaysia’s progress on flattening the curve of Covid-19. Understanding that most of us try our best to stay at home and comply with the Order, a public health specialist had mentioned that Malaysia’s effort to flatten the curve may see results in mid-May.
Dr Rafdzah Ahmad Zaki from Universiti Malaya said that the number of new Covid-19 cases may drop by the end of April, which is around the time where MCO Phase 3 should end. With the possible drop in new cases, we can hope that the curve will be able to flatten in May. Dr Rafdzah noted that the current number of new cases is still high with over 100 cases every day, implying that it might be caused by poor public compliance with the stay-at-home orders in March.
“At the moment, the number of new cases seems to be at a constant level – over 100 cases every day – it is still high.”
Dr Rafdzah mentioned that the estimated flattening of the curve in mid-May was based on the current situation as well as certain assumptions behind the models used to predict the statistics. Other than estimating the considerably good progress of Malaysia’s efforts in handling the outbreak, she had also acknowledged that Malaysia’s MCO and Enforced MCO managed to slow down the rate of transmission of Covid-19.
Although all of us would like to be hopeful about the current situation, she explained that it would take a longer time for Malaysia to achieve zero new cases.
“When we slow down the rate of transmission, as expected, the time needed to get zero cases will be longer,” said the associate professor and lecturer in epidemiology at the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine.
Other than estimating the flattening of the curve, Dr Rafdzah warned Malaysians that resurgence in new Covid-19 cases could occur if the control measures were lifted and people did not resume to take protective measures.
As reported on Free Malaysia Today, Malaysia had indeed done something right in regards to its Covid-19 crisis response. This can be seen from the growth rate of new reported cases, and that Malaysia’s “doubling rate” was not as drastic and rapid as Italy and China.
“The timely decision in implementing the MCO and identifying red zone areas has helped to flatten the curve. Extensive contact tracing and isolation also reduced the transmission within the community, preventing the situation from becoming worse as in Italy and Spain.”
We’re glad to hear that the MCO is on-track, however, it’s best not to get ahead of ourselves as we should stay at home and practise all precautionary measures.
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