Shorter quarantine for Covid-19 close contacts with booster dose

KUALA LUMPUR: Close contacts of Covid-19 positive cases will be subjected to a shorter quarantine period if they have taken their booster jabs.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob had, in October 2021, reduced the mandatory home quarantine period from 10 to seven days for fully-vaccinated close contacts.

However, the Health Ministry's latest regulation, that came into effect on Sunday, requires close contacts who havwle received their booster shots to only undergo quarantine for five days.

Those fully vaccinated, without full vaccination as well as those who are unvaccinated, in contrast, will have to undergo a seven-day quarantine if they are exposed to a positive case.

Under the new regulation, the Health Ministry also requires symptomatic close contacts to conduct self-tests using the rapid test kit antigen (RTK-Ag) or visit a healthcare facility, if the symptoms worsen.

Otherwise, the close contacts only have to undergo RTK-Ag test on the last day of their quarantine period at a public or private healthcare facility.

A close contact, according to the ministry, is an individual that either made physical contact with a Covid-19 positive case or had face-to-face interaction with a positive case within one metre in the last 14 days.

The ministry's latest directive also shortened the quarantine period for fully-vaccinated individuals who test positive for the virus and are asymptomatic to seven days.

However, a 10-day mandatory quarantine will be enforced for symptomatic cases as well as positive cases who are not fully vaccinated or unvaccinated.

Malaysia, as of Sunday, had 41,199 active Covid-19 cases.

Of that total, 33,784 are currently undergoing home quarantine while 4,080 individuals have been isolated at low-risk quarantine and treatment centres.

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