Mass Testing Of Foreign Workers Will Be Logistical Nightmare Says Mma


The Malaysian Medical Association says the health ministry should maintain targeted screening of migrant workers.PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) says testing all migrant workers in the country for Covid-19 is impractical and risks becoming a “logistical nightmare” as firms reopen for business
MMA president Dr N Ganabaskaran said the health ministry’s laboratories might not be capable of coping with such a high volume of test samples in a short time
He said the targeted screening approach should be maintained instead
“It may also not be affordable for many businesses, many of which have suffered losses due to the temporary halt in operations under the MCO
“It must also be noted that a person can still be at risk of infection after testing if they do not observe proper preventive measures,” he said in a statement today
Ganabaskaran said migrant workers had a high risk of contracting the virus due to their work environment and living conditions, stressing that these must be looked into by the government,He said many of them stay in dormitories or shared houses with limited room shared by many workers, which made social distancing a challenge
“Social distancing must also be observed on company transportation these workers take to work,” he said
Ganabaskaran said it was more urgent for Putrajaya to come up with long-term solutions by ensuring the industries’ SOPs were fully understood by workers by translating it to their mother tongue
He stressed that enforcement of the SOPs was equally important, and urged Putrajaya to particularly monitor sectors that heavily rely on foreign labour and to conduct random checks
The government made it mandatory for foreign workers across the country to undergo Covid-19 screening following a spike in foreign workers testing positive for the virus in Ampang
Senior Minister for Security Ismail Sabri Yaakob said they would have to take swab tests, beginning in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, with employers bearing the costs. - FMT

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