KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 28 — Although Covid-19 colour zones are primarily determined by the number of registered Covid-19 cases in a district or sub-district the past 14 days, the Ministry of Health (MOH) also takes other factors into account, including virus transmission risk.
According to Health Minister Dr Adham Baba, a district or “mukim” is classified red with 41 or more new local Covid-19 cases reported in the past 14 days, yellow denotes one to 40 cases, while green has zero new cases. Imported cases, including inter-district and inter-state cases, are excluded from the coloured zoning.
Basically, MOH determines the colour of a zone based on the number of Covid-19 cases reported in the past 14 days as stated in the District Risk Reduction Programme (DRRP). This acts as a guide to the community to jointly take action with the government in a particular area.
Bangi MP Ong Kian Ming had asked Dr Adham in the Dewan Rakyat to state the methodology that is being used to determine the colour of a particular zone or mukim that has registered Covid-19 cases.
“However, the determination of Covid-19 infected zone does not just rely on DRRP. It also takes into account the risk of infection in an area,” Dr Adham stated in a written Parliament reply on December 14.
Some other indicators include:
- Sharp increase of Covid-19 cases in a short period of time. This indicates a faster virus transmission rate in an area.
- Distribution of positive cases, either concentrated or scattered in an area.
- High percentage of asymptomatic cases, as it is likely to cause unidentified transmission by the involved patient.
- Population density in the affected areas because densely populated areas will increase the risk of transmission.
- Local socio-demographic aspects to identify non-citizens in a particular area, mobility of residents across the district or state due to the need to work or go to school, and to spot “rat lanes” which are used by undocumented migrants to enter an area illegally.
- The availability of shared infrastructure in localities such as markets, supermarkets, schools, houses of worship and so on. These premises gather many people from the locality.
- Type of residential area of the involved Covid-19 case.
- History of mass gatherings in the locality within the period when any positive case was detected.
Besides that, MOH also measures the impact of virus transmission on the condition of local health in a locality by analysing:
- The number of close contacts associated with the positive case that has been identified.
- The number of people under observation, including those who were sent to quarantine stations.
- The number of residents involved.