Updated: No letting up, COVID-19 cases continue to rise, 59 deaths

The situation at MAEPS makeshift hospital. Photo courtesy of Ministry of Health.

PUTRAJAYA, May 20 – There has been no letting up from the COVID-19 virus as cases continued to rise. A total of 6,806 new cases were recorded in the country today, a new record from yesterday’s 6075. Fifty-nine people also died the past 24 hours due to the virus.

Selangor continued to account for the highest numbers at 2,277 followed by Kuala Lumpur with 655 and Johor at 615. Perlis recorded the lowest number at 8 cases, according to reports in the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page.

In a press release this evening, Director General of Health, Tan Sri Dr. Noor Hisham Abdullah called on the people to continue to be vigilant including those who have received their vaccination. He urged them to follow all the standard operating procedures put in place.

He also called on them to avoid, crowded, confined areas while keeping distance when conversing.

The ministry will continue to monitor the situation in the country as well as developments abroad, he said.

Earlier, he also twitted that the Malaysian Armed Forces had completed the setting up of a Field ICU at the compound of the Hospital Kepala Batas in Penang. The unit is said to be starting operations this Saturday.

The modular concept Field ICU is capable of treating up to 27 critically ill COVID-19 patients requiring ventilators and other life support equipment. Besides this, a modular lab and radiologi unit has been also set up to provide clinical support services, he said.

A specialist anesthesiologist, two medical officers and 14 nurses trained in intensive care units are expected to be among the first to start their work at the field ICU. More staff from various categories will be added from time-to-time to strengthen further the service.