Selangor Journal
Selangor Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri Amirudin Shari and former Health Minister Datuk Seri Dzulkefly Ahmad attend the third Selangor Task Force for Covid-19 meeting on March 16, 2020. — Picture via INSTAGRAM

Selangor Covid-19 task force asks Health ministry to share data

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By Ida Nadirah Ibrahim

SHAH ALAM, April 2 — The Selangor Task Force for Covid-19 (STFC) has called for the Health Ministry to share analytical data on the coronavirus cases to enable the task force to complete the set up of an analytical platform at the state level.

Its chairman Datuk Seri Dzulkefly Ahmad, who was the former health minister, said with the help of big data analytics and machine learning, the analytical platform would be able to assist in the implementation of a focused targetted community screening and contract tracing during the movement control order (MCO) period.

“We hope that the Health Ministry would be able to share the data so that we could complete the analytics we have formulated.

“The data does not mean patient identity, which remains confidential under the Medical Act,” he said in a statement today.

Dzulkefly said the analytical data would help in driving disease control measures, micro-target community screening, the delivery of humanitarian aid as well as initiatives on the mental health care of the people.

He said the state task force had developed the analytical platform so that the recommendations made would be evidence-based according to current scientific studies, which evolves rapidly during the epidemic.

“It would also enable STFC to focus beyond the issues on the Covid-19 impact and take into account the burden on the population, the distribution of the marginalised population, such as single mothers, senior citizens, and low-income citizens, and the socioeconomic factors in setting priorities and action plans.

“As a guideline for the Selangor Menteri Besar to steer the state machinery in implementing localised intervention measures, STFC is committed to making recommendations and actions that are in line with scientific evidence, and updated data,” he said.

Yesterday, Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah was asked during a press briefing to respond to Dzulkefly’s comments that the Federal government was reluctant to share certain information on Covid-19 with state governments.

Dr Noor Hisham said while they would like to share the information, the authorities would need to vet through to ensure that there are no personal information unrelated to Covid-19 that are accidentally released.

On Tuesday, Dzukefly had in an interview asked for the Federal government to share non-personal clinical information such as day of onset of symptoms, day of admission or discharge, and therapeutic drugs used on the patients, for the state to map out the crucial Covid-19 affected areas in detail.

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