KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 3 — Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah confirmed today that a teacher in Semporna, Sabah who died recently had the infectious Covid-19.
He also indicated that the teacher’s life could have been saved if proper medical had been sought earlier at the onset of symptoms.
“But because the patient had arrived late to the hospital to seek treatment, we were unable to save the patient,” he told reporters during a press conference in Putrajaya that was also aired on the Health Ministry’s Facebook page.
Dr Noor Hisham said the symptoms of Covid-19 include shortness of breath, adding that it was too late for the hospital to put the teacher on a ventilator by then.
“If the patient came earlier, we could have given the patient a ventilator because Covid-19, one of the symptoms is shortness of breath, not enough oxygen and so on.
“But because the patient came late, we were not able to save the patient,” he said.
Dr Noor Hisham did not disclose the deceased patient’s gender, age, or any other identifying detail, saying it was against privacy laws.
However, The Star cited Sabah Education director Dr Mistrine Radin in its report yesterday saying a male teacher in Semporna had died.
Dr Noor Hisham said the ministry was able to confirm the teacher had been infected with the coronavirus after receiving the lab results of the real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) today.
Reports of the teacher’s death from the highly infectious virus triggered rumours of a statewide closure of schools there yesterday.
Semporna is among the four districts in Sabah currently placed under a targeted enhanced movement control order after a steady rise in Covid-19 cases.
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