Malaysia's R0 Rate Increases Back To 1.0 After Several Weeks Of Downward Trend

This comes two days after the Health Minister voiced his concern over the low uptake of COVID-19 booster jabs.

Cover image via @JKJAVMY (Twitter) & Danial Saad/New Straits Times

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In a statement today, 12 November, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said they will be monitoring hospitalisations and other leading indicators as the R-naught (R0) value has increased to 1.0

In a statement, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the increase in the infectivity rate to 1.0 means that the daily tally pattern of COVID-19 cases will get worse, reported Bernama.

"Our concern is if the daily tally were on the rise," he said.

In response to the findings, Noor Hisham urged members of the public to continue complying with the standard operating procedures (SOPs). 

He also urged the high-risk group to attend their appointments for booster shots.

Noor Hisham added that the increase of positive COVID-19 to 6,323 new cases on Thursday, 11 November, worries him.

Prior to this, the country's total new COVID-19 had shown a downward trend with only 4,343 new cases reported on Sunday, 7 November.

This comes two days after the Health Minister voiced his concern over the low uptake of booster jabs

On Wednesday, 10 November, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said 40% of people under the National COVID-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) did not show up for their booster jab appointments.

He warned that if the uptake is low, especially among the elderly and those with comorbidities, the number of hospitalisations will increase.

He urged people to show up if they get their appointment.

On the same day, Khairy announced that the booster shot programme has now expanded to include people aged 40 and above

In a video, Khairy said Malaysians in the age group, as well as those who have comorbidities, will be prioritised to receive the booster shots.

"Those eligible will receive their appointments through their MySejahtera application," he explained.

"When you receive an appointment through the MySejahtera app, please make sure that you are present to get the booster shot."

"Through this, it will increase our protection against COVID-19 infection."

According to Bernama, Malaysia has been administering booster shots for COVID-19 since 13 October.

MOH announced on 21 October that the booster shots are for people who received a complete dose of the Sinovac vaccine at least three months ago. It was previously open for people aged 60 and above.

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