Covid-19: We are not out of the woods yet, cautions health DG

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is still not out of the woods as a new Covid-19 wave could be on the horizon.

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said a new wave of infection was predicted based on the epidemiological development of the virus in other countries.

"Although we have entered the transitional phase (into endemicity), Covid-19 is not yet done and is still with us. We are not out of the woods and must learn to live and embrace a possible new Covid-19 wave in future," he said in his speech at the 13th International Symposium of Health Sciences 2022 (i-SIHAT 2022 Symposium) in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia here today.

Dr Noor Hisham reminded Malaysians to maintain public health preventive measures.

"Additionally, elderly groups and those with chronic health conditions are encouraged to boost their immunity with vaccines.

"We must continue wearing face masks indoors and in crowded places outdoor. These practices will contribute significantly to our safety," he said.

Dr Noor Hisham said Malaysia had been named one of the best countries globally in its vaccination programme, with low rates of Covid-19 patients in categories three to five.

He said new daily cases and the number of patients hospitalised and admitted to intensive care units (ICU) in the country also remained under control due to a successful national immunisation drive.

Despite having 98.1 per cent of adults vaccinated and a 68.6 per cent booster uptake, he urged people to remain cautious.

He said the virus outbreak worldwide had been a source of stress and adversity for many people.

"Resilience can help us get through and overcome hardship, but resilience is not something we are born with. It is built with time and experience.

"We respond to stress and adversity from the pandemic differently. So, what we can do right now is to build and strengthen our resilience to prepare for the future," he said.

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