More than a year and a half after the first case of Covid-19 was reported in Malaysia, and with endless rounds of Movement Control Orders (MCO), plus multiple knee-jerk fire-fighting measures, it is clear that the Ministry of Health (MOH) is still struggling for a comprehensive solution.
The rakyat have faithfully delivered what was asked of them.
They have taken in stride, the toll, the pain and suffering of the hardship of the pandemic and its purported solutions.
Yet, we are constantly dismayed and disgusted to read and hear about how our politicians and leaders have failed to deliver their share of what is needed, i.e. stable leadership collectively focused on solving the current crisis.
Instead, they seem to be more concerned about their own political survival. They and their supporters have displayed utter disregard for the rules and regulations which they themselves have set.
The National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) seems to be bedevilled with countless muddles, hurdles and supply issues, and have not given the rakyat the assurance that the vaccine is indeed the silver bullet to end this misery.
The current industrial action (CodeBlack) by junior doctors asking for a resolution to their contract problems with the MOH indicates the breakdown of a health care system that was once proudly touted to be one of the best in the world.
It is clear that we have not learned and have not taken action from all the many mistakes made in the past and present.
Instead, problems were swept aside, and left unaddressed year after year, from the overproduction of doctors to the long-standing issue of health care inequity. We have become an example of how things could have been done in a better way.
Our health care system has failed, putting us among the worst performing nations when it comes to battling Covid-19.
It is time again to support the call for a Royal Commission on Health Care in Malaysia that was proposed in 2017 at the Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Oration of the Academy of Medicine.
It has been put on record the facts and figures (ironically sourced from MOH studies itself) to justify why only a Royal Commission was the way forward to seek holistic solutions for the future of Malaysian health care. The advice seemed to have fallen on deaf ears.
Health care is a basic right of the rakyat. Having an equitable, effective and compassionate system is what is expected.
It must be the duty of the government to deliver this at all times, especially during a time of national calamity.
- This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of CodeBlue.