Covid-19: Malaysia records highest daily fatalities at 199 as new cases dip to 11,985 on July 21

Covid-19: Malaysia records highest daily fatalities at 199 as new cases dip to 11,985 on July 21
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KUALA LUMPUR (July 21): Malaysia’s new Covid-19 cases fell slightly to 11,985 from yesterday’s 12,366, according to health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

Cumulatively, 951,884 cases have been detected in the country since the pandemic began.

Selangor remains the State with the highest number of infections today at 5,550, bringing total cases in the State to 337,897 — representing 35.5% of the total cases in Malaysia so far.

Kuala Lumpur also reported four-digit new Covid-19 cases at 1,174, pushing total infections in the city to 101,926.

Meanwhile, Kedah posted 800 new cases, followed by Negeri Sembilan (745), Johor (644), Pahang (603), Sabah (474), Melaka (453), Kelantan (386), Penang (362), Perak (274), Sarawak (261) and Terengganu (171).

Daily recoveries, on the other hand, came in lower than new infections at 7,902. To date, 806,857 individuals have been declared cured from Covid-19, translating into a recovery rate of 84.8%.

Active cases surged further to 137,587. A total of 927 patients were warded in the intensive care unit with 459 requiring breathing assistance.

Highest fatalities ever with 199 deaths recorded today

Malaysia also witnessed the highest fatalities ever recorded in a day as 199 Covid-19 related deaths were reported today.

This brings the total death toll in the country to 7,440. Previously, the highest fatalities recorded in the country was on July 18 with 153 deaths.

Of the latest fatalities, 84 deaths were reported in Selangor, 57 in Kuala Lumpur, 16 in Melaka, 12 in Kedah, seven in Negeri Sembilan, six each in Johor and Pahang, three in Terengganu, two each in Penang, Perak and Kelantan and one each in Sabah and Sarawak.

97.6% of today’s cases in Categories 1 & 2

Of the new infections, 48.9% or 5,850 of cases were classified as Category 1 (no symptoms), while 48.7% or 5,847 cases were classified as Category 2 (mild symptoms), according to Dr Noor Hisham.

Only 1.5% or 178 cases were classified as Category 3 (pneumonia), while 0.4% or 45 cases were Category 4 (pneumonia requiring oxygen therapy), whereas 0.5% or 65 cases were under Category 5 (critical and requiring assisted ventilation).

“MOH has taken the approach whereby Covid-19 patients in Categories 1 & 2 will observe self-quarantine in their homes in order to reduce congestion at hospitals.

“Based on the latest data from national CPRC and CPRC Hospital Services, younger age groups such as 40s and 50s are seen to be more likely to fill the ICU than senior citizens aged 60 and above.

“This situation proves that the vaccine has helped reduce Covid-19 infection among the vulnerable and elderly,” Dr Noor Hisham added.

Meanwhile, the number of Covid-19 testing dropped to 95,772 from yesterday’s 124,519, with today’s positivity rate recorded at 12.51%.

R0 declines to 1.12

According to Dr Noor Hisham, the country's basic reproduction number (R-naught or R0) for Covid-19 infections nationwide declined to 1.12 on July 20 from 1.14 the day before, with Terengganu having the highest R0 at 1.31 (up from 1.3 on July 19).

Sabah came in second at 1.25 (up from 1.23), followed by Kedah at 1.23 (down from 1.24), Penang at 1.23 (up from 1.2), and Johor at 1.2 (up from 1.18).

The R0 projects the average number of people that each new Covid-19 patient will infect, or what is termed the effective reproduction number. An R0 of less than 1.0 means the infection is not spreading.

The only States with an R0 below 1 are Sarawak at 0.95 (up from 0.93), Labuan at 0.75 (down from 0.77), and Perlis (0).

30 new clusters with 17 from workplaces, bringing active ones to 931

The Ministry of Health also identified 30 new clusters today — comprising 17 from workplaces, with the rest being from communities, high-risk groups, religious and private education clusters.

To date, 3,329 clusters have been detected by the Ministry, with 2,398 declared ended. That leaves 931 active clusters.

Lam Jian Wyn