PUTRAJAYA (NST) – Screening mechanisms have been put in place at all entry points into the country to prevent an Ebola outbreak.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S Subramaniam said body heat scanners were being used at international airports and border crossings.
He said the body temperature of travellers would be screened before they headed to Immigration checkpoints.
“If a traveller is found to have fever, he will be questioned to ascertain a number of issues, including whether he has visited any of the Ebola-affected countries,” he said yesterday.
Dr Subramaniam said the individual would be asked on whether he had come into contact with any Ebola patients and if he had, he would be placed under supervised quarantine for 21 days.
He said the ministry had identified 21 hospitals nationwide to receive referred cases of anyone suspected to have Ebola for early case detection and management.
“Laboratory-confirmed cases will be treated in three dedicated hospitals. They are Sungai Buloh Hospital, Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kota Kinabalu and Kuching General Hospital.”
Ebola has struck in three West African countries – Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – since March.
Until Oct 12, the World Health Organisation (WHO) had reported 8,973 cases, including suspected, probable and confirmed cases, with 4,484 deaths.
Dr Subramaniam said the protocols used by Malaysia were based on WHO-recommended measures, adding that there was a dedicated team of doctors and nurses undergoing field simulation exercises.
“Six simulation exercises related to the handling of (Ebola) cases have been conducted at various levels of the ministry to evaluate and strengthen our preparedness and response.”
Dr Subramaniam said the simulation exercises included infection-control processes and methods to ensure the disease would not spread.