Grim milestones for Malaysia, Indonesia

Tough times for South-east Asian nations as Thailand reports highest number of daily infections

KUALA LUMPUR : Malaysia and Indonesia reported record Covid-19 deaths yesterday while Thailand was hit with its highest number of infections.

Malaysia marked another grim milestone with 199 deaths yesterday. The previous highs were 138 fatalities reported on July 17 and 135 on July 8.

The country's death toll has now reached 7,440 cases since the pandemic began, said the Health Ministry yesterday.

While the health authorities have said the majority of infections recently were classed as low risk, the country has been charting a rising number of daily deaths.

The ministry also reported 11,985 infections, bringing the total to 951,884.

Meanwhile, non-Covid-19 patients at government hospitals in the greater Klang Valley area will be transferred to private facilities to make space for more Covid-19 patients, said the Association of Private Hospitals Malaysia.

Its president, Dr Kuljit Singh, said non-Covid-19 patients were being transferred to the private hospitals in stages from Tuesday.

"This decision has been made by private hospitals in the greater Klang Valley area consisting of hospitals in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and some in Negeri Sembilan. These hospitals will accept non-Covid-19 inpatients from government hospitals as well as patients in the emergency department.

"The idea is to assist the government so that they will have more space in some hospitals where they are planning to convert them into full Covid-19 hospitals," he said yesterday.

Indonesia reported a record high of 1,383 deaths yesterday, according to data from the country's coronavirus task force.

The country also reported 33,772 cases, taking the total to nearly three million, with 77,000 deaths.

Indonesia extended its curbs to Sunday and aims to ease them gradually from Monday if the infections drop.

Thailand yesterday reported a new daily record of 13,002 cases, bringing the country's total to 439,476.

The Covid-19 task force also reported 108 deaths, bringing total fatalities to 3,610. - THE STAR, REUTERS, THE STRAITS TIMES