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Sunday, August 9, 2009

H1N1 : Government Has Contingency Plans - Muhyiddin

PERTH, Aug 9 (Bernama) -- The government had contingency plans in handling school public examinations if the Influenza A (H1N1) pandamic worsened, said Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

"If it needs adjustment to the dates (of school government examinations), I, as the minister, will study (all the) possibilities. Only if the situation is not managable. I hope we won't reach that situation," he said when asked about the matter at the end of his five-day working visit to Perth.

However, Muhyiddin who is also education minister, hoped the situation would not reach that stage.

"We cannot make predictions. The situation may be better next week. I don't want to make any unnecessary forecasting," he said, adding that right now, all school public examinations were scheduled to go on as planned.

Asked about the possibility of patients taking examinations at their respective homes, Muhyiddin said he would discuss the matter with the education ministry director-general.

He said the government was taking the necessary measures to control the pandemic and followed the World Health Organisation's (WHO) rules.

Among the measures include the decision to increase the anti-virus stock from 10 to 20 per cent which involved an additional allocation of RM20 million and the guidelines on the influenza released by the health ministry, through various channels, such as the media.

Muhyiddin said, out of 10,000 schools throughout the country, only a small number had been hit by the pandemic.

He said the public should also know all the precautions they should take, for example, not to attend any gathering which was not important.

The deputy prime minister said that instructions had been given to the relevant ministries and agencies to increase the awareness campaign on Influenza A (HINI), and also to all states and districts.

He said the government would provide the necessary assistance, such as pamphlets and other campaigning materials, adding that measures such as self-quarantine must be followed strictly.

Muhyiddin said the number of deaths was not only increasing in the country but also in other countries, as well.

He said that from the beginning, the government had taken preventive measures.

"If such measures had not been taken, the situation could have worsened," he said.

-- BERNAMA

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