Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Influenza A(H1N1): Health curfew if mortality rate higher than 0.4pc

KUALA LUMPUR: Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the influenza A (H1N1) outbreak is a “national health emergency” but the government will only consider declaring a health curfew if the mortality rate goes above 0.4 per cent.

The country’s mortality rate for H1N1 is currently between 0.1 per cent and 0.4 per cent. Any announcement on a curfew will be made by the National Security Council.


Emergency or curfew

> What does a national health emergency mean?
The Government has declared the Influenza A (H1N1) virus situation a health emergency because of persistent community-level transmission of the virus where there are between 200 and 400 new confirmed cases daily.
During this situation, individuals with influenza-like illnesses such as flu, fever and cough must wear a mask and practice self-quarantine by staying home and avoiding contact with family members until the symptoms subside.

> How long would the emergency last?
The emergency will last until local transmissions can be reduced to below 200 confirmed cases per day and when no related deaths have occurred for a period of time.

> What is a national curfew?
Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the Government will only
consider declaring a national curfew if A (H1N1)-related deaths exceed 0.4% of the number of confirmed cases multiplied by 20. This is to take into consideration that for every one case reported, there could be 20 which are not.

> What will happen during a curfew?
A temporary closure of public places such as shops, schools, universities, libraries, shopping complexes and public events during a specified period of the day will be ordered during a curfew.

> Who has the authority to declare a national curfew?
The National Security Council chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin will declare a national curfew based on input and recommendations from the Health Ministry.


Malaysian Public Comments

Lin:
Hw many more death before they declare this as national emergency ... I wonder!!!

Dave:
Health curfew if mortality rate higher than 0.4pc!! Where can we find the rates?? How do we keep ourselves informed or updated about the 'Mortality rate' so we could be better prepared for a possible curfew?? Or are we going to rush a last minute rush for daily essentials like food and such for the certain period (perhaps a week?) during the curfew? Will the rush for such items cause more virus spreading in the pandemonium to stock these goods? Perhaps the wise ones should stock up at least a weeks food and essentials from now on, just in case. You might never know what your wise decisions now may save you from.

Ira:
I am not pleased with the health ministry announcement, every single day the death toll is rising and they want to wait until more and more baby, adult and elder peoples are dying then will they take drastic measures. Everyone in Malaysia is terrified with this H1N1 situation, malaysia recorded as one of the highest death toll country in wikipedia. The malaysian should have been more educated about H1N1 and please wear mask whenever you go out, that mask is not only for sick people but also for healthy people for prevention, i urge the malaysian and the government to take their initiatives and social responsibilities to the highest. We should adopted other countries method to prevent this disease from spreading.

Lin:
It's scary ...

vincent wong:
The health ministry is not doing anything, they have been only reporting... they should take a lead on precautionary measures... Govt hospital staff are as good as nothing too when one approach them... i doubt the hospital knows what to do... they just wait for patients to die.

Worried Parent:
As I walked to the nearby Pasar Malam (night market) in JB, I was the only one wearing masks. Everyone looked at me as if I dropped from a different planet. It was like Hey have u all heard of the state of emergency we are in!!!! Even the Soyabean Lady told me that they won't get infected because the wind is blowing and there is air circulation. How wrong they are. I think it needs to repeated ON HOW THEY CAN GET INFECTED with the wind carrying the droplets of virus around. So Rabiatul Aziz is right. The media should educate and remind them time and time again on how the virus can spread.

aaron chin:
now that we know the virus spreads through droplets,we all should also realize that these droplets can and may infect through air conditioned places by being re-circulated through the aircond ducts. what i can forsee is more of us will be infected through the passive inhalation of these re-circulated droplets, without realizing it,eg. in shopping centres,etc etc. wear your masks!

jayjay:
The action taken by the health minister is rather annoying. We never blame the doctors and health staff from doing their works. We know they sacrificed so much their lives by exposing themselves to the virus. But we really need to see a drastic action such that everyone feels safe and secure.