SINGAPORE: New COVID-19 cases in Malaysia fell for the fourth consecutive day to 5,271 on Monday (Jun 7), down from 6,241 cases on Sunday.
This was the first time in 19 days that daily cases have dropped below 6,000. Malaysia passed the 6,000-mark on May 19.
The national case tally stood at 622,086 infections as of Monday.
Selangor again reported the highest number of cases at 1,374, followed by Sarawak with 703 cases and Negeri Sembilan with 571 cases.
There were 455 cases in Kuala Lumpur and 355 cases in Johor. Kelantan and Sabah reported 341 cases and 336 cases respectively.
READ: Drones used in Terengganu, Malaysia to detect high body temperatures in public areas as COVID-19 cases spike
The majority of new COVID-19 cases and deaths in Malaysia have been “sporadic” and unlinked to existing cases or clusters, said Malaysia’s health director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah on Monday.
"This is very worrying," he said in a Facebook post.
“The Ministry of Health is urging the public to take this situation seriously as the spread of COVID-19 is within communities including at the shopping complexes, workplaces and so on,” said Dr Noor Hisham.
“They need to understand that anyone could be infected with COVID-19 wherever they are. As a result, we can see the increase in sporadic cases and fatalities within communities.”
The number of such unlinked cases remained high in the week from May 30 to Jun 5, accounting for 52,040 or 84.3 per cent of the total new cases reported that week, he said. Of the 641 deaths that week, 559 infections were unlinked to previous cases.
In contrast, between Mar 28 and Apr 3, 8,968 cases or 52 per cent of the total new cases reported that week were unlinked. Of the 35 deaths reported that week, 26 were unlinked, he noted.
“One of the factors contributing to this situation was the emergence of new variants of the virus within communities with higher infectivity and fatality rates, besides the wider spread of COVID-19 within communities compared to the previous epidemiology week,” said Dr Noor Hisham.
READ: Malaysia’s state governments and private hospitals can buy their own WHO-approved COVID-19 vaccines: Khairy
Malaysia is in the second week of a nationwide lockdown in place from Jun 1 to Jun 14. Only essential economic and service sectors are allowed to operate.
As of Sunday, more than 1.13 million people in Malaysia had received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, said health minister Dr Adham Baba.
More than 2.44 million people have received a first dose, bringing the total number of vaccine doses administered in Malaysia to about 3.57 million.
The states and federal territories with the highest number of both doses of the vaccine delivered are Selangor, Sarawak, Perak, Kuala Lumpur and Johor, said Dr Adham.