KUALA LUMPUR, May 2 — Malaysian Pharmacists Society president Amhari Buang said the sales of face mask is unlikely to see any drop despite the new relaxation of the mask mandate.
Amhari told English daily The Star that people will still need to get the face mask as they need to continue wearing it indoors.
“I think the awareness (of the safety precautions) will still be there. I don’t expect it to change,” he was quoted as saying.
He also said some have even started using face masks as a “fashion statement”.
Amhari also pointed out that the prices of the face masks are also unlikely to change following the new mask mandate as the quality of the product can’t be compromised.
Community pharmacists, he added, are aware of the trends in demand and supply when it comes to maintaining stock.
Stressing the importance of self-regulation as Malaysia moves towards endemicity, Amrahi said everyone has to take care of themselves.
“I think that after two years of living with the virus, we are very familiar with the symptoms.
“If you have symptoms, you can’t come out and you have to wear a mask,” he said.
On April 27, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin announced that face masks would be optional for those who are outdoors, but still mandatory for those who are indoors and in public transportation, including e-hailing services.
However, Khairy said that the ministry encourages the practice of wearing face masks as it helps curb the spread of the Covid-19 virus, especially for those who are high-risk such as the elderly and children who are unvaccinated.
Meanwhile, Medical Practitioners Coalition Association of Malaysia president Dr Raj Kumar Maharajah said that the move to relax the measure is a bit premature as many children below five had yet to be vaccinated, putting them at risk of infection.
“The public needs to be reminded repeatedly that we are still not in the endemic phase.
“They need to be responsible by isolating themselves if they are not feeling well and report a self-test if they are positive,” he said, adding that a new variant of the Covid-19 virus could also possibly emerge.