covid 19 positive, or close contact employees not allowed to work as per normal

This also applies to those asking employees who are close contacts of COVID-19 cases to come back to work.

Employers in Melaka who ask employees that are COVID-19 positive, or are close contacts of COVID-19 cases to come to work "will face stern action", the State Health and Anti-Drug Committee chairman, Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh, warned.

According to a Bernama report, there were "several complaints" about employers of restaurants, supermarkets, and of those in the manufacturing sector asking workers "to continue working as usual".

"Any employee facing this situation is urged to report the matter, as we are actively curbing the spread of clusters in the workplace, which is seen to be increasing," Dr Akmal was cited as saying. "Employers need to know what the definition of ‘close contact’ is, so that transmission in the workplace can be controlled earlier, so that it does not spread to the community."

Chairman Akmal shared in the news report that this is critical because the prevalence of clusters in the workplace in Melaka "had recorded an increase recently", and the number of close contacts in the workplace "has risen from 4.8% to almost 10%" over the past three days.

Drawing reference to his spot check at a factory in Merlimau, he noted it had been ordered with "an immediate seven-day closure" due to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the factory, and to the infection spreading to other factories around the area. He added that since 5 February 2022, there is a total of 21 workers at the factory who were found COVID-19 positive through RT-PCR testing.

"The factory is ordered to be closed in accordance with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) set, and if they can provide safety measures and infection prevention, then the decision to reopen will be allowed, based on the assessment from the Jasin district health office," Dr Akmal was cited as saying.

"The state health department does not arbitrarily issue an order to close the factory; it is based on the assessment at the workplace, but if it has spread to other parts and cannot be controlled, the order to close the factory has to be issued."

RelatedJan 2022 update: What to do if you get COVID-19, or are a close contact in Malaysia

Image / 123RF

Follow us on Telegram and on Instagram @humanresourcesonline for all the latest HR and manpower news from around the region!