Adham Predicts Mall Covid-19 Outbreaks From Hari Raya

The HIDE list that claims to predict Covid-19 clusters in public premises will be released to the public latest by tomorrow.

KUALA LUMPUR, May 17 — Health Minister Dr Adham Baba today projected Covid-19 outbreaks in shopping centres due to increased visits during Hari Raya while house gatherings were banned.

During the Movement Control Order (MCO) that has been implemented nationwide during the Hari Raya festivities, the government has banned house gatherings amid rising Covid-19 cases. 

Dr Adham, during a virtual press conference with Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin on the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) today, said the issue of people visiting malls instead of house gatherings to meet their relatives was an issue of concern. 

“We found that many went to the mall to meet. So, that can cause another crisis especially if there’s transmission in malls in the country,” Dr Adham said. 

“They did not celebrate at home, but went to the mall to visit relatives because of our weakness of not being able to identify this situation earlier.” 

Khairy, during the press conference, said that the latest Hotspot Identification by Dynamic Engagement (HIDE) list that is based on predicted Covid-19 clusters in public premises will be made available to the public latest by tomorrow.

“We will be issuing the updated HIDE list either today or tomorrow,” Khairy said.

The previous HIDE list had targeted high-traffic malls and supermarkets in the Klang Valley, causing three days’ closure of these premises. 

In an analysis recently published by CodeBlue, it was found that nearly 90 per cent of Covid-19 cases detected from April 9 to May 8 were sporadic, not cluster-linked. Hence, malls, shops, and markets combined only contributed 0.09 per cent of Malaysia’s 81,191 new coronavirus infections reported the past month, or fewer than one out of a 1,000 cases.

It is important to note that asymptomatic Covid-19 individuals can still easily visit the malls once these premises reopen and spread the infection silently.

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