COVID-19 infection resurges amid lesser public compliance with health rules

The COVID-19 infection rate has risen again in the country, but the public’s compliance with the statements of the Ministry of Health is still weak.
Starting in early September, COVID-19 positive cases were found in regions and states including Nay Pyi Taw. Such high local transmission is a sign of weakness in following the restrictions, orders and announcements of the Ministry of Health.
“There are many people who haven’t received the COVID-19 vaccination in some wards and villages. Some are vaccinated against COVID-19 at the vaccination sites and the companies’ and organizations’ members get vaccinated on their own plans. There are groups like the group that receives vaccine twice while another that gets thrice, the one that receives not less than fourth doses and the rest that is not vaccinated at all. The people from these groups are seen in crowded places without wearing face masks and so the infection rate is high,” Dr Ye Aung Win told the GNLM.
According to the statement regarding the vaccination rate of COVID-19 patients between 28 January and 7 September 2022, of the Ministry of Health, 80 per cent of patients have not been vaccinated at all, 15.9 per cent receive first doses, four per cent have been fully vaccinated and 0.1 per cent complete the booster shots.
“It is found that there has been over 100 positive cases or nearly 200 cases recently. Most cases are reported in Yangon Region. Currently, the restaurants, beer bars and teashops are crowded with people and they twist the adherence to the statements of the Health Ministry. The officials should conduct a field study to take action against such doings,” said Daw Aye Thet Tun from Yankin Township. The local transmission is higher than the positive cases of returnees and most of the cases are in Yangon, said Yangon Region Chief Minister U Soe Thein, in his capacity as Chairman of the Region COVID-19 Control and Emergency Response Committee on 6 September. On that day, the country reported 204 positive cases after testing 11,306 patients.
The total positive cases in Myanmar reached 617,056 until 12 September with 594,339 recoveries and 19,442 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health.
“Everybody should be fully vaccinated. It should encourage those who do not get the vaccine to go to the respective health centres and dispensaries for vaccines. The vaccine can prevent death and reduce the infection rate,” a health worker told the GNLM.
The ministry urges people to receive booster shots as it causes less severe illnesses and fewer deaths among those who are fully vaccinated.
“It is a concern as the positive cases are increasing. Most people do not wear face masks. Some do not wear them as they are fully vaccinated. The people without face masks are mostly seen in crowded places such as pagodas, bus stops, buses, markets and shopping centres. If the officials impose travel restrictions and ban mass gatherings at restaurants and teashops, the infection rate can be reduced. We need to wear face masks until the Ministry of Health releases a statement as a COVID-free country. Even if the people do not wear the face masks, they should participate in preventing the disease, which spread through the air,” said a retired employee from Sangyoung Township. – TWA/GNLM

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