Covid-19: After videos of errant shoppers go viral, NSC sets new SOPs for retailers

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 19): The National Security Council has developed a new set of standard operating procedures (SOPs) for retailers to form guidelines for their operations after videos of shoppers flouting practices prescribed by the Ministry of Health (MoH) to prevent Covid-19 infections went viral.

The SOPs cover shopping complexes, supermarkets, hypermarkets, departmental stores, boutiques, clothing stores, and mini-marts, said health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah in a statement today.

There are six procedures, namely:

  1. social distancing
  2. limiting the entry of customers into the premises at any one time to prevent crowding
  3. ensuring that all staff, suppliers and customers have their temperatures taken before they are allowed to enter
  4. preparing hand sanitisers at the entrance
  5. making the wearing of face masks by staff mandatory while at work, and
  6. disinfecting and sanitising the premises throughout operating hours.

The new SOPs came as more people are out shopping now, not only for their daily necessities but also for food, clothes and décor ahead of the Hari Raya Aidilfitri festivities, which start on Sunday (May 24).

“While many shoppers and traders follow the SOPs set, there are still a small part of the community who are indifferent and blatantly breaching the SOPs in shopping complexes, grocery stores and other retail centres.

“Many netizens have made images and videos of people not following the SOPs [which went] viral. The disobedience is worrying,” he said.

The MoH also urged the public to avoid shopping in cramped and crowded places where it is difficult to practise social distancing, and for parents to not bring children or babies to shopping centres and public places that are crowded to prevent them from contracting Covid-19.

Yesterday, Noor Hisham said 318 children aged 12 and below in the country are infected with the virus that causes the disease.

He reminded the public that the virus still existed in the community even though the number of cases in the country has declined.

Malaysia reported 37 new cases today, bringing the total infections in the country to 6,979.

Meanwhile, 31 patients have been discharged today. This brought the total recoveries rose to 5,646.

The MoH also reported that the country’s death toll stood at 114 after one death was recorded.

Read also:
MoH: No legal action against parents taking kids to public places for now, but please refrain from doing so

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