Last month, Prime Minister Dato Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced that the country will be moving into the endemic stage starting 1 April.
However, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah has reminded the public that the country is only in a transition phase to endemic and has not yet entered the endemic phase.
In a statement, Dr Noor Hisham said the SOPs should still be practiced to ensure that Malaysia can move to the next phase safely.
He said during the transition phase to endemic, the community needed to learn to live with the Covid-19 virus in conditions that were least disruptive to daily life by adopting public health measures to protect themselves, their families and the community.
“The management of the Covid-19 pandemic needs to shift from reliance on government interventions such as SOPs and existing laws to individual responsibility, and community solidarity,” he said.
Similarly, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin has in a tweet explained that the country is only starting to transition towards the endemic stage.
No, we are not near endemic, yet. This is a (probably slow) transition to endemicity.— Khairy Jamaluddin 🇲🇾🌺 (@Khairykj) April 1, 2022
Endemic suggests the disease is not widespread without public health measures (like wearing masks). We are far from endemic. https://t.co/nRluc8qe2A
“No, we are not near-endemic, yet. This is a (probably slow) transition to endemicity. An endemic suggests that the disease is not widespread without public health measures (like wearing masks). We are far from endemic.” he wrote.
Nonetheless, this has caused a confusion among the public with many wondering, “what does that mean?”
“Is this for April Fools or what?” a netizen asked.
Mana yang keliru, begini. Malaysia belum lagi fasa Endemik.— Anem Arnamee (@arnamee) April 1, 2022
Kita sedang “Fasa Peralihan ke Endemik”. Ada syaratnya nak ke betul-betul negara endemik.
Yang boleh isytihar ENDEMIK hanya WHO, sebagaimana dulu mereka umum PANDEMIK.
One netizen took the initiative to explain the situation to the rest. She wrote, “For those of you who are confused, it’s like this. Malaysia has not entered the endemic phase yet. We are currently in the ‘transition phase to endemic’. “
“There are certain conditions that need to be met by endemic countries. Only WHO can declare an endemic, just as they declared the pandemic.”
While we are not at the endemic phase yet, at least there’s some progress for us to live like we used to.
Let’s all be grateful that many of the restrictions have been relaxed and we can now return to some form of normalcy we’ve had before the Covid-19 pandemic first hit.