Monday, May 16, 2022

Clear communication needed on Covid tests at airports

It may mean going the extra mile, having to provide such information, but at the end of the day, travellers would depart with a positive impression of their stay in Malaysia.

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MAHB as the operator of airports across the country should put up signage at the entrance of the arrival hall of each of the international facilities, clearly stating that passengers are required to do a Covid-19 rapid antigen test (RTK-AG) within 24 hours of arrival.

State also that it is not mandatory that tests should be done at the airport.

It will be of great help if before landing, the airline concerned also has the flight attendants make an announcement to this effect.

As a transparent measure, MAHB should also state the rates for each test on the signage.

As information to foreigners, a list of clinics providing services for testing would be helpful.

It may mean going the extra mile, having to provide this information, but at the end of the day, the foreigner would depart with a positive impression of his stay in Malaysia.

The service provider should be reasonable about its charges. To be fair, the same rates should be charged as at clinics in the city.

I am not wrong to say there has been a lack of communication among local agencies to disseminate information to international arrivals, hence the confusion over whether there is a need to do an RTK test at the airport.

It comes as a surprise that MAHB has dismissed claims that RTK testing at the international facilities is monopolised by certain private healthcare operators.

With only one service provider at each airport, if this is not a monopoly, then what is it?

BP Clinical Lab Sdn Bhd for KLIA, Edgenta UEMS Sdn Bhd for Penang International Airport, MYEG Services Sdn Bhd for Kota Kinabalu International Airport, Gribbles Pathology (M) Sdn Bhd for Kuching International Airport.

Singapore, Indonesia, and the Philippines have either stopped testing for arriving air passengers or have voiced the need to do it.

Malaysia should seriously consider scrapping the optional testing at airports since it is not mandatory for arrivals who have done a test 48 hours prior to departure.

When travelling, every dollar spent unnecessarily is a burden.

Flying will never be the same.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of MalaysiaNow.

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