KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 27 — The Ministry of Health’s (MOH) backlog non-Covid procedures comprising surgical-based and medical-based cases have increased by about 3 per cent to 59,049 cases as of September 30, from 57,355 cumulative cases reported on September 1.
Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, in a written reply in Parliament yesterday, said a total of 38 public hospitals and 71 private hospitals nationwide have been engaged in the outsourcing of services this year, as of September 30.
Over the period, 8,338 surgeries and procedures were successfully conducted, involving a total cost of RM73.5 million. Khairy told this in response to Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii’s query on the matter.
“The MOH has managed to reduce case backlogs and waiting times for treatment through this outsourcing initiative, although the number of private hospitals and expertise in some states is limited.
“This situation is also occurring in many countries around the world, where a lot of focus has been given to the treatment of Covid-19 cases, thus resulting in the treatment of non-Covid cases being affected,” Khairy said.
In order to address the backlog issue, MOH will expand outsourcing efforts to other private hospitals, open up more repurposed operation theatres in phases, extend the surgical operation duration on Saturdays from five hours to eight hours, as well as on Sundays, if required, and have discussions with military hospitals and university hospitals on areas where they can assist.
Last month, Khairy said Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah has a week to come up with a national plan to clear the country’s non-Covid cases. He added that once Covid-19 cases become manageable, the MOH will shift its attention to dealing with backlog non-Covid cases.