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Faridzuan face great challenges as frontline worker

KEDAH-born Muhammad Faridzuan Arifin is among the thousands of frontline workers who risked their lives in combating the coronavirus-19 pandemic in the country.

There is no turning back when the bells ring for the call of duty, said the health care worker.

“It was a risky situation but I ‘m glad to be involved as a volunteer. There is so much we as volunteers can do to help other frontline workers. There is always the risk of contracting the Covid-19 virus but these are real time challenges we face without even thinking of it for a second,” said Faridzuan.

The 22-year-old, who graduated as a medical assistant from UniKL Malaysian Institute of Medical Science Technology (UniKL MESTECH) in Kajang, added that the experience gained is immeasurable.

He was posted to the Titiwangsa Health Clinic in the heart of Kuala Lumpur city and together with other frontline staff was assigned to Kampung Baru and Chow Kit Market areas which had a high number of confirmed Covid-19 positive cases reported.

“Initially I was taking swab tests and later Rapid Diagnostic Test. We had to practice social distancing despite having personal protective equipment on throughout the process of taking swab test on about 1,000 people. It was tiring and we took turns,” he added.

Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDT) detect the presence of viral proteins (antigens) expressed by the COVID-19 virus in a sample from the respiratory tract of a person. If the target antigen is present in sufficient concentrations in the sample, it will bind to specific antibodies fixed to a paper strip enclosed in a plastic casing and generate a visually detectable signal, typically within 30 minutes.

However, the most challenging moments for Faridzuan was monitoring Malaysians returning from overseas quarantined in a government gazetted facility for 14 days.

“We monitor their health condition every few hours looking out for symptoms and ensure they strictly follow the Standard Operating Procedure set by the Ministry of Health. It was challenging because all

those under quarantine gave all kind of excuses just to get away from the facility and return home,” said Faridzuan.

Faridzuan is now back at work at the emergency and trauma section of the Putra Specialist Hospital in Kajang and most often accompanies ambulances during emergency calls.

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