Finance Minister: Government Examining Ways To Further Reduce Price Of Covid-19 Self-Test Kits
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Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz has said that the government is examining ways to further reduce the price of Covid-19 self-test kits by the end of the year. The effort will be led by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry (KPDNHEP) and the Ministry of Health (MOH), he said.

“To expand testing efforts, the Ministry of Health has recognised RTK Antigen and approved several Covid-19 self-test kits which can be bought in pharmacies nationwide. In making the self-test kits accessible to everyone, KPDNHEP and MOH have set the ceiling price at below RM20 per set,” said the minister. Briefly, the government had set the ceiling price for Covid-19 antigen rapid self-test kits at RM16 per unit (wholesale price) and RM19.90 per unit (retail price) last week.

Aside from that, Tengku Zafrul also shared several other updates with regard to the government’s Covid-19 response efforts. Some measures in the pipeline for implementation under the National Recovery Plan (NRP) include setting up a call centre to offer immediate assistance in managing Covid-19 causes, as well as factoring in booster shots or multi-year vaccination programmes into public healthcare protocols.

(Image: The Malaysian Reserve)

Additionally, Tengku Zafrul said that the Institute of Medical Research is undertaking the Whole Genome Sequencing to better detect the presence and spread of new variants. There are also plans to expand the use of technology and mobile data usage to enhance contact tracing.

“Potential close contacts will soon be identified and notified on the need to quarantine themselves. Asymptomatic and cases with minor symptoms are now subject to a Home Surveillance Order,” said the minister.

Tengku Zafrul further said that although the country has shown some progress under the NRP, more needs to be done, particularly in strengthening the capacity of the healthcare system and nurturing the recovery of the economy. On top of that, he expressed hope that the NRP and Budget 2022 will serve both as a template to exit the pandemic and to navigate pressing challenges ahead.

(Source: The Sun Daily)

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