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Society urges govt to encourage the use of face masks

KUALA LUMPUR (May 11): The Malaysian Thoracic Society is urging the authorities to “encourage the use of face masks” as restrictions are eased with the conditional movement control order (CMCO), Malay Mail reported today.

“Scientific evidence points to the use of facemasks in primarily helping to control the source of infection,” Malaysian Thoracic Society said in a statement

“This is a key public health initiative as a sizable number of Covid -19 infections occur in the asymptomatic phase.

“It has also been shown to be as equally beneficial as the practice of frequent handwashing as a mitigation strategy,” the society explained.

It has been reported that Health Director-General Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah has “repeatedly” said only people with symptoms or are sick need to wear masks, while “cautious members of the public are free to do so”.

As a result, some non-governmental medical groups and experts “have expressed concern over the Ministry of Health’s advice about wearing face masks”, reported the news portal.

“This period also includes several major religious and cultural festivals such as Hari Raya, Hari Keamatan and Hari Gawai which will inevitably bring increased social interaction between family members and also within the community.

“In educating the public as they gradually enter into the new normal, it is imperative that any advice given by the government to all Malaysians is guided by the best scientific evidence,” the Malaysian Thoracic Society added.

“Because this will help control Covid-19 infection, thus preventing a surge whilst instilling confidence among the general public.”

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