Sarawak has asked the federal government to increase the capacity of several district hospitals to treat Covid-19 patients. (Bernama pic)

KUCHING: The National Security Council (MKN) has been urged to increase the capacity to conduct Covid-19 screenings in the state to 5,000 people a day.

Deputy Chief Minister Douglas Uggah Embas said only 2,400 tests could be carried out daily at present, with some results known after three days.

“If we can increase the capacity to 5,000 tests a day, then our waiting time can be shortened. We have told the Sarawak Health Department to get the results in less than 24 hours. If we can, we want them in 12 hours,” he said.

Uggah, who is also the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee chairman, was replying to a supplementary question from Dr Hazland Abang Hipni (GPS-Demak Laut) during a question-and-answer session in the state assembly today.

He said the state had also asked MKN to further increase the capacity of district hospitals in Bau, Serian, Sri Aman, Betong, Sarikei, Kapit and Limbang to treat Covid-19 patients.

“The state government has approved an allocation to build a new molecular laboratory at Limbang Hospital. With this lab, we can increase the screening capacity to 200 a day. Once completed, there is no need for test samples from patients in Limbang and Lawas to be brought to Miri as they can be analysed at the Limbang Hospital,” he said.

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