Coronavirus pandemic

Cases in Malaysia 'likely to peak soon'

Health workers perform testing in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, on March 28, 2020. PHOTO: REUTERS

KUALA LUMPUR • The number of coronavirus cases in Malaysia is expected to peak in the middle of this month, and there are signs of a flattening of the infection curve, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said.

Malaysia has the highest number of known infections in South-east Asia with 3,116 confirmed cases, including 208 reported yesterday in the biggest daily increase in a week. There have been 50 deaths, with five reported yesterday.

"Based on available data, the WHO country office has projected that Malaysia will see a peak in hospitalised cases in mid-April," Dr Lo Ying-Ru, the organisation's head of mission and representative to Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore, told Reuters yesterday.

The number of critically ill patients is estimated to reach the peak within the next week, she said, adding that the WHO projections could change. "There are initial signs of flattening of the curve, but this could bounce back if control measures are lifted and if people don't continue to take protective measures," Dr Lo said.

She added that data did not suggest widespread community transmission in the country.

There are 105 patients in intensive care. Malaysia expects to slow the rate of new cases by the first or second week of this month, Health Ministry director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah said.


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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 03, 2020, with the headline Cases in Malaysia 'likely to peak soon'. Subscribe