12 October

Globally, the total confirmed cases of Covid-19 have reached over 238,346,000, with more than 4,859,000 deaths reported.

Malaysia has relaxed Covid-19 related restrictions after new daily confirmed cases reached their lowest levels since early July, and the country announced it has fully vaccinated 90% of adults.

On Monday, interstate and international travel were allowed to resume for fully vaccinated and inoculated individuals.

The shift in policy reflects the government’s strategy to treat Covid-19 as endemic by reducing the interference of Covid restrictions in the lives of individuals and instead classifying it as a normal risk to people’s lives.

Despite these relaxations, daily confirmed Covid-19 cases remain high in Malaysia, with over 20 new daily confirmed cases per 100,000 population.

As such, preventative measures to reduce transmission remain imperative for the easing of restrictions to work.

Like Malaysia, daily confirmed Covid-19 cases in Mongolia have declined in recent weeks, but transmission remains high, with over 44 new daily confirmed cases per 100,000 individuals.

Unlike Malaysia, however, the vaccination rate in Mongolia is much lower as 65% of the population has been fully vaccinated, and progress in vaccinating new individuals has largely stalled since July.

The relative lack of vaccination has likely contributed to a different outcome than Malaysia as Mongolia battles through a wave of Delta variant related infections that have resulted in hospital bed shortages and most Covid-19 cases being treated at home.

Hence, while Malaysia is beginning to recover from the latest wave of Covid-19 infections, Mongolia may need to institute further measures to prevent a further strain on the health system.

Walter Gabriel, MPH, Epidemiologist at GlobalData Plc.