Saturday, July 12, 2014
Sunday, July 06, 2014
KUCHING: The Health Ministry will fight for more perks for specialist doctors serving in Sarawak to attract more doctors from Peninsular Malaysia to serve in government hospitals in the state.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S Subramaniam said this was one of the approaches his ministry was looking into, to address the shortage of specialist doctors in the state.
“As an immediate and short term measure to attract doctors to come and serve in Sarawak we are trying to create more senior posts because we believe with better incentives, more doctors from Peninsular Malaysia will be interested to come and work here.
“However, we need to bring this matter to the attention of the Public Service Commission (PSC) and Public Service Department (PSD) because it involved existing policies,” he said.
He stated this at a media conference during his working visit to Sarawak General Hospital (SGH) here yesterday.
Subramaniam said the long term measure to address the shortage of specialists faced by Sarawak hospitals was to create more opportunities for students from Sarawak to go into medical studies.
“This was among the challenges conveyed to me by the State Health Department top management. We are aware of the problems and I have discussed it at the ministry level and we will look into it,” he added.
He said there were 213 posts for specialists in the state and 93 per cent of them had been filled.
“Overall I am satisfied with the quality of services in Sarawak because despite all the challenges such as poor communication in certain parts of the state the rate of maternal and infant mortality reported in the state had been very low,” he noted.
Subramaniam assured that the government would continue to improve the facilities at Sarawak General Hospital, including building the long overdue multi- storey car park.
“Some of the projects have already been completed, some still on-going and others are yet to start. All are aimed at providing better health care services to the people here.
“In addition Petra Jaya Hospital project has started and the 300-bed hospital is expected to be operational by middle of 2016. When completed, it will complement SGH which has 900 beds. With a total of 1,200 beds the two hospitals should be able to cater for the needs of the people in the city.
During his visit to SGH yesterday the minister had a dialogue session with the medical officials and staff prior to the media conference. He later visited the patients at one of the wards in SGH.
Among those present at the occasion was State Health director Dr Zulkifli Jantan and other senior officers.
Tuesday, July 01, 2014
Health Ministry says 16 Japanese Encephalitis cases since January
JUNE 30, 2014
Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said of the 16 cases, eight were in Sarawak, four in Sabah, two in Penang and one each in Selangor and Kelantan.
Of the four deaths, two were in Sabah and one each from Selangor and Kelantan.
“The ministry received a report of a JE case from a private hospital in Penang on June 27 where the 12-year-old boy was a student of a primary school in northern Seberang Perai but lives in Padang Serai, Kedah,” he said in an official statement issued today.
He revealed that the student first received medical treatment at two private clinics on May 16 after suffering from headache, nausea and vomiting before he was warded in a government hospital on May 18 for suspected meningitis.
On May 21, the boy’s condition worsened and he was intubated to assist in his breathing and on the same day, he was transferred to a private hospital in Bayan Baru, Penang for further treatment.
He was discharged on June 17 but he was unable to talk or walk due to the infection and on June 26, he was warded into the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
Subramaniam said the results of tests on blood samples taken on May 23 was released on June 27 confirmed that the boy had JE.
“The Penang Health Department and Kedah Health Department had conducted investigations into the case especially around the boy’s school in north Seberang Perai and his house in Padang Serai, Kedah.
Amongst the preventive measures conducted included testing other residents and students for JE symptoms and conducting fogging to destroy mosquito breeding sites.
“So far, we find that the 715 students in the boy’s school did not show any symptoms of suffering from JE and the residents in the area are also symptom-free,” he said.
The Health Ministry also cooperated with the respective state’s veterinary departments to check for JE infections.
“Based on our investigations on the JE case in Penang, we suspect that it stemmed from the patient being exposed to mosquitoes with the JE virus while participating in a camping activity in school between April 24 and 26,” he said.
Subramanian said the locality of the student’s school is a high risk area for JE infection as it is near pig farms.
The JE virus is spread by the Culex mosquito that had bitten animals such as pigs and birds that are reservoirs for the virus.
The virus has a five to 15 days incubation period, a large portion of the infection are asymptomatic and the possibility of contracting encephalitis is one out of 250 cases.
Symptoms of the virus infection include headache, fever, nausea and vomiting.
“The ministry has advised all schools to obtain the necessary advisory from the district health offices before conducting any camping exercises or overnight activities especially if the school is located within a 2km radius from a pig farm,” he said.
He urged pig farm workers and residents living nearby to take precautionary steps as prevention against the virus infection.
“Please get rid of mosquito breeding grounds and whoever experienced any of the symptoms must immediately get medical treatment,” he said.