30 December 2022
Malaysia will test wastewater samples from all flights arriving from China for Covid-19, Health Minister Zaliha Mustafa said, in preparation for a possible spike in cases following China’s move to do away with pandemic restrictions.
Zaliha said this was part of the government’s efforts to strengthen surveillance at international port of entries amid rising coronavirus cases in China.
“Wastewater samples will be sent to the National Public Health Laboratory for PCR tests and then sent for genome sequencing if detected positive for Covid-19,” she said in a statement Friday.
All international arrivals, including from China, will also be subjected to a fever screening in accordance to existing health protocols, the minister said.
“Those with detected fever or symptoms or have self-declared will be referred to the quarantine center or to health personnel for further examination,” said Zaliha.
Pre-pandemic, China was the third largest country in terms of tourist arrivals in Malaysia. About 3.1 million Chinese tourists visited Malaysia in 2019, from the overall 26.1 million arrivals, according to data from Tourism Malaysia.
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