Malaysia reports first deaths from COVID-19

The Ministry of Health (MOH) today confirmed two COVID-19-related deaths. These are the first two deaths as a result of coronavirus infection in Malaysia.

The first victim is case #178, a 34-year-old Malaysia who attended the tabligh gathering at the Masjid Jamek Seri Petaling mosque. Starting 5 March, he started having a fever and was treated at Hospital Permai, Johor before succumbing to the disease on 17 March 2020.

The second is a 60-year-old pastor from Emmanuel Baptist Church Kuching, Sarawak who had a history of chronic illness. He experienced fever, cough and breathing problems on 7 March before passing away at the Sarawak General Hospital on 17 March 2020.

According to the Sarawak State Disaster Management Committee, they are still in the process of identifying the source of his infection. Meanwhile, 193 of the deceased close contacts have been traced and undergoing home-quarantined.

Sarawak today recorded eleven new positive cases–six from Kuching, three from Limbang and one each from Betong and Lawas. The state recorded another 35 person-under-investigation (PUI) while 204 patients are still awaiting results. Currently, 45 COVID-19 cases in Sarawak has been traced to four clusters: Sri Petaling cluster, Kuching (church) cluster, Sarikei cluster and another Kuching cluster (source yet to be identified).

Malaysia recorded 120 new cases today, bringing the total number to 673 cases. Of the total, 95 cases are related to the Masjid Jamek Seri Petaling mosque cluster.

On a positive note, the MOH reported that seven patients have recovered and discharged. The total number of patients who have recovered to date is 49.

On Monday, prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin ordered a nationwide Movement Control Order with effect from 18 March until 31 March 2020 to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes the closure of non-essential governmental and private businesses as well as a blanket ban on all mass gatherings.

The Movement Control Order falls under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 and Police Act 1967.

For more up-to-date situational reports of COVID-19, visit WHO and the MOH websites.

Source: MOH/KKM

Header image: SoyaCincau – BM

By Vernon

Vernon is the founder and chief editor of A graphic designer by profession, he has a deep love for technology, cars, gadgets, food, and travel. He tweets too much and is also known as a caffeine bacterium ("life's too short for bad coffee"). Bleeds Blue (go Chelsea FC!) and considers BMW, Porsche, Alfa Romeo cars to have in the garage--for true petrolheads, that is.