Malaysia's surprise move to ease coronavirus rules worries scientists

5/05/2020 12:15:00 PM

The infection numbers are low and the economist costs are mounting - but scientists warn it's too soon to reboot the economy by opening restaurants and offices.

Malaysia's move to ease coronavirus restrictions early and start reopening the economy has alarmed scientists, who warn it could trigger a second wave of infections across the country

The infection numbers are low and the economist costs are mounting - but scientists warn it's too soon to reboot the economy by opening restaurants and offices.

The Movement Control Order shuttered businesses and schools, stopped people congregating at religious, sporting, arts and cultural events, blocked Malaysians travelling overseas and restricted interstate travel.Credit:AdvertisementSchools and religious institutions will remain closed.

The strict lockdown was also broadly supported by Malaysians, he said."I personally prefer the number of new cases to be further down, to single digits, before we can open the gate but in the current situation, the Ministry of Health believes in the country’s capability to manage the outbreak," she said. "I am expecting potential new cases and clusters."

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And it is of no concern that Australia is doing the same? This is the holy Islamic month of Ramadan. I hope Malaysia does not allow mosques to open for prayers as the mosques can have upto 1000s at a time praying together. Be careful Malaysia 🇲🇾 Oh no 😱😱💩💩 What should i do? I don’t want to be a racist like the SMH and stick my nose into a foreigners business

Scientists discover antibody that blocks virusScientists in the Netherlands are one step closer to finding a treatment for COVID-19 with the discovery of a virus-blocking antibody. Every day some scientist discovers something about covid

Malaysia's migrant workers to undergo mandatory COVID-19 tests as restrictions ease despite spike in cases - ABC NewsMalaysia is easing restrictions on its citizens even as coronavirus cases spike, but it has asked millions of foreign workers to undergo compulsory tests. Does that make them racist or is that only a white person slur? This fake plan-demic is causing many countries around the world to behave like communist governments under the false pretext of covid19. Disgraceful. The good thing is Malaysia easing restrictions.

Coronavirus: Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy says 'Bold' easing of restrictions are comingAustralia’s chief medical officer Brendan Murphy announced yesterday that it may be time to ease coronavirus restrictions in stages, in a move he dubbed “bold”. Biggest hoax in human history yet still talks like we believe him. This is the Twilight Zone we now live in. Fck off! Fur Ihre Sicherheit!!

Tasmania to ease coronavirus restrictions on aged care as shops reopen in north-west - ABC NewsTasmania will begin to lift coronavirus restrictions at aged care homes from next Monday, as strict additional retail rules in the state's north-west are dropped from today.

Italy eases coronavirus lockdown, pays respects to more than 29,000 dead - ABC NewsItalians are strolling in the park, grabbing take-away cappuccinos and paying respects to the astonishing number of dead as the European epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic wakes from the continent's longest lockdown.

Coronavirus disruption eases in some WA Catholic schools as face-to-face lessons resume - ABC NewsA number of Catholic schools in Western Australia return to face-to-face learning, despite earlier suggestions that arrangement would only be available for students in senior years. Wrong The threat has not eased, there is still no govt medical response, no safety measures, they're still lying about transmission and stats The sex starved priests must be super excited.

Larger text size Very large text size Malaysia's surprise move to ease coronavirus restrictions early and start reopening the economy has alarmed scientists, who warn it could trigger a second wave of infections across the country.Research indicates UV light can kill COVID-19 germs The breakthrough offers hope of a treatment or a vaccine for the deadly virus, which has infected more than 3.Migrant workers in Malaysia are now required to be tested for coronavirus, a senior minister said, as the Government eased six-week long curbs on movement and businesses.Brendan Murphy has said a “bold” easing of restrictions might soon be underway.

The Movement Control Order shuttered businesses and schools, stopped people congregating at religious, sporting, arts and cultural events, blocked Malaysians travelling overseas and restricted interstate travel. It was put in place on March 18 and was due to expire on May 12. Study co-lead author Professor Berend-Jan Bosch said the antibody targets the deadly bug’s infamous ‘spike protein’. A woman walks home with groceries next to barbed wire in the coronavirus locked down area of Selayang Baru, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. "The costs for testing must be borne by the employer," the minister said. Credit: AP But with the economic costs mounting - Barclays Bank estimated the domestic economy is losing $800 million per day - Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced the order would be softened, starting from Monday, May 4. “Such a neutralising antibody has potential to alter the course of infection in the infected host, support virus clearance or protect an uninfected individual that is exposed to the virus,” Prof Bosch said It could lead to a therapy that would be given to somebody immediately after they become infected or exposed. Advertisement Malaysia, a nation of 32 million people, reported 55 new coronavirus infections on Monday, slightly down after two consecutive days of more than 100 new cases. But millions more need to get on board before restrictions will be lifted.

This took the country's tally to 6353 total cases. VIRUS NEUTRALISED In tests, the monoclonal antibody neutralised SARS-CoV-2 – however, further studies are planned to see if the findings translate to the clinic. Migrant workers have been a particularly vulnerable community during the pandemic. There have been 105 deaths and 4484 people have recovered. Under the new conditional order, restaurants and food courts are allowed to open provided they strictly enforce distancing regulations, offices and shopping malls (including a wide range of shops) can also get back to business - with stringent cleaning regimes - and some exercise can resume. When they were exposed to different coronaviruses they produced antibodies to the spike protein. Schools and religious institutions will remain closed. There have been suggestions that the newish prime minister, Muhyiddin, may have acted after pressure from his political allies to wind back the restrictions. It was then turned into a human version. HOW RESTRICTIONS WILL BE EASED Professor Murphy gave a detailed plan on how restrictions will be eased, explaining Australia would take a staggered approach.

Pollster Ibrahim Ben Suffian, from the well-respected Merdeka Centre, said about 75 per cent of Malaysians approved of the government's handling of the crisis, according to research he did in March. The strict lockdown was also broadly supported by Malaysians, he said. Picture: Nicolas Asouri/AFP Source:AFP Prof Bosch said: “This cross-neutralising feature of the antibody is very interesting and suggests it may have potential in mitigation of diseases caused by future emerging related coronaviruses. Nine of Malaysia's 13 states have indicated they will not fully wind back restrictions because local authorities have ongoing health concerns. Professor Malina Osman, an epidemiologist at Universiti Putra Malaysia, said winding back the order was "premature". It builds on almost two decades of work by the same team since the first SARS epidemic of 2002 which killed almost 800 people and infected over 8000. "I personally prefer the number of new cases to be further down, to single digits, before we can open the gate but in the current situation, the Ministry of Health believes in the country’s capability to manage the outbreak," she said. The ultimate aim is to the reopen gyms, entertainment facilities and dining in at cafes and restaurants.

"I am expecting potential new cases and clusters.” PREVENTION AND TREATMENT The COVID-19 pandemic has spread so rapidly it's infected more than 3." "Easing.. Co-lead author Prof Frank Grosveld, of Erasmus Medical Centre in Rotterdam, said: “This discovery provides a strong foundation for additional research to characterise this antibody and begin development as a potential COVID-19 treatment.. should be done gradually, not abruptly.

..ideally, from an epidemiology point of view, the easing should start when there are no cases from local transmission for 14 consecutive days." Immigration officers wearing full protection suits prepare at a coronavirus locked down area. Credit: AP Bulgiba Awang Mahmud, a professor at the Centre for Epidemiology at the University of Malaysia and the secretary-general of Malaysia's Academy of Sciences, said he was surprised the order was being wound back.

"I did not consider it the correct time to do this". "I am not convinced that we are out of the woods yet as we have not dealt with a number of issues, one of which is the large number of migrant workers, many of whom are undocumented," he said. "There are risks that seeds of infection still in the community will cause new clusters of infection." Loading Both Awang and Malina praised authorities' work tracing infections, its management of the healthcare system and more - but shared reservations about the early end to restrictions." It is not the only south-east Asian nation to begin easing restrictions.

Vietnam has reported just 271 cases, while undertaking 261,000 tests - more than any other country in the region - and students have begun to return to school after three months. Singapore has seen a huge rise in case numbers to 18,778 people infected, the majority of whom are migrant workers living in crowded dormitories, and has imposed a series of tough measures to act as a circuit breaker. The rate of new infections rates is beginning to ease and the government is flagging an easing of some measures next month. Sign up to our Coronavirus Update newsletter Get our Coronavirus Update newsletter for the day's crucial developments at a glance, the numbers you need to know and what our readers are saying. Sign up to The Sydney Morning Herald's .