Khairy: Temperature scans to be dropped from Covid-19 SOPs, logbooks also to go

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The temperature scan has been a perennial part of preventive measures since the start of the pandemic, but its continued relevance has come into question as new Covid-19 cases were now overwhelmingly asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic. —  Picture by Miera Zulyana
The temperature scan has been a perennial part of preventive measures since the start of the pandemic, but its continued relevance has come into question as new Covid-19 cases were now overwhelmingly asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 20 — Mandatory temperature screening for entry into premises will be removed from standard operating procedures (SOP) to prevent Covid-19, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin announced today.

Without specifying a timeframe, Khairy said the proposal will be brought forward to the National Security Council for approval and revision at the soonest.

The temperature scan has been a perennial part of preventive measures since the start of the pandemic here, but its continued relevance has come into question as new Covid-19 cases were now overwhelmingly asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic.

“After we have looked at it, actually it does not seem to be an effective measure to prevent the spread of Covid-19. There is no correlation, so to speak.

“And the advice is that if you are unwell and asymptomatic, you do not need to go out. I think we have reached a stage where we can deal with it (Covid-19),” he said in a press conference here.

He also said the ministry will be proposing another amendment to the SOPs to do away with the use of record books as an option for visitors to register when they enter a location.

Last year, the Malaysia Shopping Mall Association lamented that its best efforts to safeguard mall patrons by doing away with the use of record books had resulted in some being unwittingly penalised by authorities.

The association had said that some malls did not use the logbooks as they provided a loophole for unverified shoppers to gain entry into the premises without having to demonstrate their health status.

Clarifying further, Khairy said it was still mandatory for premises to provide MySejahtera check-ins for their patrons and ensure they were fully vaccinated before allowing entry as per National Security Council’s SOPs.

He also encouraged the general public to make use of MySejahtera Trace (MySJ Trace) that enables electronic detection of close contacts.

“If you go to a crowded place, please switch on your MySJ Trace. It’s not compulsory, but we highly recommend it,” he said.

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