THE IMPORTANCE OF HIGH INDEX OF SUSPICION AND IMMEDIATE CONTAINMENT OF SUSPECTED COVID-19 CASES IN INSTITUTE OF HIGHER EDUCATION SABAH, MALAYSIA BORNEO

  • Loganathan Salvaraji Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1160-5243
  • Syed Sharizman Syed Abdul Rahim Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
  • Mohammad Saffree Jeffree Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0373-4451
  • Azizan Omar Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3369-4075
  • Nicholas Tze Ping Pang Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
  • Fatimah Ahmedy Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5811-4188
  • Firdaus Hayati Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3757-9744
  • Boon Tat Yeap Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
  • Nelbon Giloi Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
  • Sahipudin Saupin Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
  • Assikin Muhammad Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
  • Syaza Putri Zainudin Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Kota Kinabalu 88400, Malaysia
Keywords: High Index Suspicion, Containment, Suspected COVID-19 Cases, Institute Of Higher Education, Sabah Borneo

Abstract

Higher education institutions face major challenges in managing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The risk of exposure from the community poses a threat to campus staff and students. This study describes epidemiological characteristics of suspected COVID-19 cases among a public university’s students and staff. This is a retrospective review on data collected from the institute’s COVID-19 Preparedness and Respond Centre, located at the main campus in Kota Kinabalu, the capital city of Sabah from mid-January to April 2020. Incidence rate was calculated, and epidemiological information retrieved from interviews and relevant documents. The majority of suspected COVID-19 cases were staff (57.1%) with incidence rates higher among males (IR=40.2/1,000 population) and those working in the frontline (IR=39.6/1,000 population). Suspected COVID-19 cases were mostly related to occupation (37.3%) and social contacts (27.3%). Student cases were largely related to household (38.1%) and during travel (33.3%). One positive COVID-19 case was reported of out of the 161 suspected cases (0.6%) in the institution. An operational team must be set up to conduct situational analysis and integrate management with other departments. Suspected COVID-19 cases must be quarantined and monitored on a daily basis. A high index of suspicion and effective containment of suspected cases will prevent spread of the virus among students and staff.

References

David.J.C. Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Practice Essentials, Background, Route of Transmission.

Yang Z. et al. More Evidence Suggests Pangolins May Have Passed Coronavirus From Bats to Humans.

Malaysia MOH. COVID-19 (Guidelines).

EAIE. Coping with COVID-19: International higher education in Europe | EAIE.

UMS. Universiti Malaysia Sabah. Official Web Portal. 2020.

Peter.O. 102 foreign students among UMS intake | Daily Express Online - Sabah’s Leading News Portal.

Mukhsam MH, Jeffree MS, Pang NTP, et al. A University-Wide Preparedness Effort in the Alert Phase of COVID-19 Incorporating Community Mental Health and Task-Shifting Strategies: Experience from a Bornean Institute of Higher Learning. Am J Trop Med Hyg. July 2020:tpmd200458. doi:10.4269/ajtmh.20-0458

Wu Z, McGoogan JM. Characteristics of and Important Lessons from the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Outbreak in China: Summary of a Report of 72314 Cases from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention. JAMA - J Am Med Assoc. 2020;323(13):1239-1242. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.2648

Management of Patients with Confirmed 2019-nCoV | CDC.

Nishiura H, Kobayashi T, Miyama T, et al. Estimation of the asymptomatic ratio of novel coronavirus infections (COVID-19). Int J Infect Dis. 2020;94:154-155. doi:10.1016/j.ijid.2020.03.020

MacIntyre CR. Global spread of COVID-19 and pandemic potential. Glob Biosecurity. 2020;1(3). doi:10.31646/gbio.55

Zainul.E. Malaysia to boost Covid-19 testing capacity with rapid test kits from South Korea | The Edge Markets.

Vanar.M. Sabah gets much-needed Covid-19 test kits, medical supplies flown in | The Star Online.

Tang.A. Malaysia announces movement control order after spike in Covid-19 cases (updated) | The Star Online.

Keeling MJ, Hollingsworth TD, Read JM. Efficacy of contact tracing for the containment of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). J Epidemiol Community Health. June 2020. doi:10.1136/jech-2020-214051

Wilder-Smith A, Freedman DO. Isolation, quarantine, social distancing and community containment: pivotal role for old-style public health measures in the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak. J Travel Med. 2020;27(2). doi:10.1093/jtm/taaa020

Kenneth.T. 20 districts are still under red zone category | The Star.

Day M. Covid-19: four fifths of cases are asymptomatic, China figures indicate. BMJ. 2020;369:m1375. doi:10.1136/bmj.m1375

Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi. [The epidemiological characteristics of an outbreak of 2019 novel coronavirus diseases (COVID-19) in China]. - PubMed - NCBI.

Wenham C, Smith J, Morgan R. COVID-19: the gendered impacts of the outbreak. Lancet. 2020;395(10227):846-848. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30526-2

Heymann DL, Shindo N. COVID-19: what is next for public health? Lancet. 2020;395. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30374-3

CDC. Severe Outcomes Among Patients with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) — United States, February 12–March 16, 2020.; 2020.

Abdullah JM, Wan Ismail WFN, Mohamad I, et al. A Critical Appraisal of COVID-19 in Malaysia and Beyond. Malaysian J Med Sci. 2020;27(2):1-9. doi:10.21315/mjms2020.27.2.1

Sim MR. The COVID-19 pandemic: major risks to healthcare and other workers on the front line. Occup Environ Med. 2020;77(5):oemed-2020-106567. doi:10.1136/oemed-2020-106567

Hellewell J, Abbott S, Gimma A, et al. Feasibility of controlling COVID-19 outbreaks by isolation of cases and contacts. Lancet Glob Heal. 2020;8(4):e488-e496. doi:10.1016/S2214-109X(20)30074-7

Nishiura H, Kobayashi T, Miyama T, et al. Estimation of the asymptomatic ratio of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) infections among passengers on evacuation flights. medRxiv. February 2020:2020.02.03.20020248. doi:10.1101/2020.02.03.20020248

Yau EK, Pang NTP, Shoesmith WD, James S, Hadi NM, Lin LJ. The behaviour changes in response to COVID-19 pandemic within Malaysia. Malaysian Journal of Medical Sciences. 2020;27(2):45-50.

Pang NTP, Shoesmith WD, James S, Nor Hadi NM, Yau EK, Lin LJ. Ultra brief psychological interventions for covid-19 pandemic: Introduction of a locally-adapted brief intervention for mental health and psychosocial support service. Malaysian Journal of Medical Sciences. 2020;27(2):51-6.

Pang NTP, Kamu A, Hambali NL, Mun HC, Kassim MA, Mohamed NH, Ayu F, Rahim SS, Omar A, Jeffree MS. Malay Version of the Fear of COVID-19 Scale: Validity and Reliability. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction. 2020 Jul 3:1-0.

Published
2020-10-01
How to Cite
Salvaraji, L., Syed Abdul Rahim, S. S., Jeffree, M. S., Omar, A., Pang, N. T. P., Ahmedy, F., Hayati, F., Yeap , B. T., Giloi, N., Saupin, S., Muhammad, A., & Zainudin, S. P. (2020). THE IMPORTANCE OF HIGH INDEX OF SUSPICION AND IMMEDIATE CONTAINMENT OF SUSPECTED COVID-19 CASES IN INSTITUTE OF HIGHER EDUCATION SABAH, MALAYSIA BORNEO. Malaysian Journal of Public Health Medicine, 20(2), 74-83. https://doi.org/10.37268/mjphm/vol.20/no.2/art.573