State government invited to play bigger role
KOTA KINABALU: Luyang State Assembly Member Phoong Jin Zhe suggested that the state government play a greater role in providing human resources to state health departments and of the district.
âI have received many complaints about the Ministry of Health. In addition to the crowds in the Mega PPVs (public vaccination centers) which worry the public, the complaints are as follows.
âFirst, the results of the swab tests are significantly delayed.
âOther than that, those who have undergone 14 days of quarantine still cannot receive their release letter.
Therefore, their quarantine bracelets are not removable.
âThose who are infected are urged to undergo a home quarantine. No quarantine bracelet or quarantine order is issued. We are concerned that this will turn into a pandemic prevention flaw.
âLast but not least, the public has tried to contact the health service, but no one is responding to the hotline or responding to public concerns,â he said. .
Phoong recognizes the challenges of the health authorities and urges the state government to tackle the problem.
“This is unacceptable because the quarantine is not monitored by the authorities and some irresponsible patients would continue to walk in the public. Infected people are also anxious because they have limited information, such poor communication would not help us to curb this pandemic but would cause public unrest.
âIn my opinion, the state government has a responsibility to support federal authority, state and district health departments.
âA huge amount of human resources is needed because the flow is huge. We need more staff to help in various areas such as performing swab tests, producing results, informing infected patients, quarantine arrangements, transport to quarantine centers, ensuring that the results of the second swab test are negative.
âState government plays a crucial role in the administrative system. They can appoint staff to manage helplines, monitor quarantine orders, remove quarantine bracelets. This is to allow the health department to move more health professionals to fight the virus through our vaccination programs, âsuggested Phoong.
He also praised former Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal for his visionary leadership and the establishment of the state health ministry.
âDuring our tenure (Warisan-PH) as state government, former Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal established the Ministry of Health and People’s Welfare. We clearly understand that authority over health is constitutionally federal, but state government is not totally excluded from public health matters. If the state government were able to participate and play a bigger role, it would help usb flatten the curve sooner.
Phoong as the former Minister of Youth and Sports of Sabah, he also recommended that the state government involve the ministry to help speed up the state’s immunization program.
âI have previously recommended that the state government encourage local youth organizations to organize immunization awareness programs in various districts.
âThe ministry should use the funds available to provide allowances for young volunteers from these youth organizations.
âThe ministry also has many tangible assets such as sports infrastructure. The government can convert this infrastructure to PPV to speed up our vaccination program, âPakatan Harapan Sabah Youth chief recommended.
He also urges the state government to improve and play a bigger role in this war on Covid-19 and the public to remain calm.
âI would also like to call on the public to remain calm in the midst of this situation. If you have been informed positive and have undergone 14 days of quarantine, do not panic and continue to contact the KKM (Ministry of Health) hotline â,
âPlease be a responsible citizen and undergo self-quarantine if you are infected or come in close contact with infected people. If you happen to develop severe symptoms, please contact the 999 hotline, âhe said.