An eight-year-old girl from Serian died after being hospitalised for severe complications from Covid-19, Sarawak authorities said today.
The girl, who tested positive for Covid-19 on Aug 21, was one of two people in the state who died of the virus today. The other was a 59-year-old man from Sibu who tested positive for Covid-19 on Aug 23.
The Institute of Health and Community Medicine at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak said the presence of the ultra contagious Delta variant was as high as 99% in the Kuching division and had been detected in 10 parts of the state.
“A total of 178 cases of the new Delta variant have been detected, a detection rate of as high as 83%,” Sarawak health department director Mohamed Sapian Mohamed said in a statement today.
“The presence of this variant which has a high rate of infectivity – five to eight times more than other SARS-CoV variants – makes it a major factor in the high prevalence of cases in Sarawak, especially in the southern zone.”
He added that children account for 30% of positive cases in the state.
Of the new cases detected in August, he said, 99% were asymptomatic or showed mild symptoms.
He also noted that the bed utilisation rate for critical care cases in Sarawak had gone up this month although it was still “under control”.
“If this situation persists, the health system in these areas will be paralysed and in turn, a similar situation for the whole country is likely to occur,” he said.
Sarawak recorded 2,522 positive cases today, taking the state’s cumulative caseload to 112,245 with 513 deaths.