Significant drop in HFMD cases in Sarawak with 542 recorded last week


 Dr Sim said the drop in the number of cases could have been due to the school holidays. – File photo

KUCHING (June 12): A total of 542 hand, food and mouth disease (HFMD) cases have been recorded throughout the state last week, which was a significant drop from 822 cases recorded in the week before.

According to Deputy Premier Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian, the drop in the number of cases could have been due to the school holidays.

“The children are at home so the disease cannot spread or lessen. Hopefully, when the schools reopen tomorrow, the Health Department will be on alert, especially in monitoring child care centres and schools.

“Parents and teachers must also be alert to curb the disease from spreading, and we hope that it will not rebound.

“We are in the stage of outbreak as the figure showed 542 cases,” he said when met at the Blood Donation campaign organised by the Federation of Kuching, Samarahan and Serian Division Chinese Associations Youth Section in conjunction with the World Blood Donor Day at a mall at Jalan Stutong Baru here today.

Nevertheless, Dr Sim, who is Public Health, Housing and Local Government Minister called on the public to wash our hands frequently and make sure the toys, floor and any other surfaces that are constantly in contact with babies and young children are being kept clean.

He also advised parents to bring their children to the nearest clinic if they feel unwell, develop a fever, ulcers in their mouth or blisters on their hands and feet.

“Parents and teachers must be aware of what are the symptoms of HFMD. We also need the school to play their role, making sure they check the children do not have HFMD,” he said.

With schools reopening tomorrow, he urged the Health Department, schools and parents to keep an eye on the children’s wellbeing.

“The parents, the schools must do their part and our whole department has to be on alert , the public health division must go around to check these premises.

“We know this transmission is through close contact, personal hygiene, the child care centres and schools’ hygiene are very important.

“Hopefully when the schools reopen, everybody knows what to do and the disease would not rebound,” he said.