Ministry of Health Malaysia

Malaysia, Malaysia

Ministry of Health Malaysia

Malaysia, Malaysia
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Tahir N.M.,University of Malaya | Tahir N.M.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Al-Sadat N.,University of Malaya
International Journal of Nursing Studies | Year: 2013

Background: Exclusive breastfeeding rates in Malaysia remains low despite the implementation of the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) policy in government hospitals. It has been suggested that any form of postnatal lactation support will lead to an increase in exclusive breastfeeding rates. Objective: To study the effectiveness of telephone lactation counselling on breastfeeding practices. Design: Single blinded, randomised controlled trial (RCT). Setting: Maternity wards in a public hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Participants: 357 mothers, each of whom had delivered a full term, healthy infant via spontaneous vaginal delivery. Methods: Mothers were followed up for 6. months. The intervention group (n= 179) received lactation counselling via telephone twice monthly by certified lactation counsellors in addition to receiving the current conventional care of postnatal breastfeeding support. The control group (n= 178) received the current conventional care of postnatal breastfeeding support. Definitions of breastfeeding practices were according to World Health Organization (WHO) definitions. Participants answered a self-administered questionnaire during recruitment and were later followed up at one, four and 6-month intervals during the postpartum period via a telephone-based questionnaire. Results: At 1. month, a higher percentage of mothers in the intervention group practiced exclusive breastfeeding, compared to the control group (84.3% vs. 74.7%, OR 1.825 95%, p= 0.042, CI. = 1.054, 3.157). At 4 and 6. months postpartum, similar percentages of mothers from the two groups practiced exclusive breastfeeding (41.98% vs. 38.99%; 12.50% vs. 12.02%, no significant differences, both p>. 0.05). Slightly higher numbers of mothers in the control group had completely stopped breastfeeding at the 1, 4 and 6. month marks, compared to the intervention group (7.4% vs. 5.4%; 12.6% vs. 9.9%; 13.9% vs. 9.4%; all p>. 0.05). The reason cited by most mothers who had completely stopped breastfeeding during the early postpartum period was a low breast milk supply, while returning to work was the main reason for stopping breastfeeding later in the postpartum period. Conclusions: Telephone lactation counselling provided by certified lactation counsellors from the nursing profession was effective in increasing the rate of exclusive breastfeeding for the first postpartum month but not during the 4 and 6. month postpartum intervals. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Ahmad N.,Institute for Public Health | Cheong S.M.,Institute for Public Health | Ibrahim N.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Rosman A.,Ministry of Health Malaysia
Asia-Pacific journal of public health / Asia-Pacific Academic Consortium for Public Health | Year: 2014

Adolescence is the time of greatest risk for the first onset of suicidal behaviors. This study aimed to identify the risk and protective factors associated with suicidal ideation among Malaysian adolescents. Data from the 2012 Malaysia Global School-based Student Health Survey, a nationwide study using a 2-stage cluster sampling design, were analyzed. The survey used a self-administered validated bilingual questionnaire and the Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale. The prevalence of suicidal ideation was 7.9%. Analysis revealed that suicidal ideation was positively associated with depression, anxiety, stress, substance use, being bullied, and being abused at home, either physically or verbally. In addition, suicidal ideation was significantly higher among females and among the Indians and Chinese. Having close friends and married parents were strongly protective against suicidal ideation. Understanding the risk and protective factors is important in providing comprehensive management for suicidal ideation. © 2014 APJPH.

Anuar H.M.,Institute for Health Systems Research | Fadzil F.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Ahmad N.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Abd Ghani N.,Ministry of Health Malaysia
Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine | Year: 2012

Background: Urut Melayu, the traditional Malay massage, had been introduced into three pioneer hospitals in Malaysia, as part of the integrated hospital program. It was introduced primarily for the rehabilitation of poststroke patients. After almost 3 years since it was first implemented, there are currently plans to extend it to other hospitals in the country. Information from this study will contribute toward a better future implementation plan. Objectives: This study was conducted to gain an insight into the experiences and views of poststroke patients and their urut Melayu practitioners. Methods: A qualitative study design was adopted. A total of 17 semistructured in-depth interviews were carried out with poststroke patients who were undergoing urut Melayu treatment at one of the three integrated hospitals. Information was solicited from their accompanying caregivers whenever necessary. The 2 urut Melayu practitioners at the hospital were also interviewed. All the interviews were carried out in Malay by the authors, at the Traditional and Complementary Medicine unit of the relevant hospital. The interviews were audiotaped, transcribed, and coded into categories through a constant-comparison method of data analysis. Illustrative quotations were identified to supplement the narrative descriptions of the themes. Results: It was found that urut Melayu was sought by patients who had experienced stroke brought about by hypertension and postdelivery complications. They reported the unique characteristics of urut Melayu and their positive experiences with it. Conclusions: Urut Melayu has potential as a complementary therapy for poststroke patients. It is recommended that the number of practitioners at the Traditional and Complementary Medicine unit be increased to provide the optimum care for poststroke patients. © 2012, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

News Article | December 17, 2016

LUGANO-SINGAPORE, Dec. 18, 2016 - Cancer has a major impact on mental and physical wellbeing, researchers report at the ESMO Asia 2016 Congress in Singapore. Results from a Malaysian study (1) of 1,362 patients found more than four in five survivors were suffering from anxiety and a similar number had depression a year after diagnosis. Lead author Shridevi Subramaniam, a research officer at the National Clinical Research Center, Ministry of Health Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, said: "We urgently need new ways of supporting cancer survivors and addressing wider aspects of wellbeing. "Instead of just focusing on clinical outcome, doctors must focus equally on quality of life for cancer patients especially psychologically, financially and socially." Researchers included Malaysian patients from the ACTION study (ASEAN Cost in Oncology Study) and nearly a third (33%) had breast cancer. They filled in questionnaires to assess health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Anxiety and depression levels were also included in the survey. A patient's satisfaction with their physical health and mental wellbeing- or health-related quality of life -- is an important end result in cancer care. But the study showed that patients' mental and physical wellbeing was low overall 12 months after diagnosis. The more advanced the cancer, the lower the HRQoL. The type of cancer was also a factor because disease severity differs. Women with reproductive system cancers, for example, had higher wellbeing scores than lymphoma patients. This could be explained by the fact that lymphoma is often aggressive and progresses quickly while reproductive system cancers, such as cervical, can spread slowly over a number of years. "The key message is to focus more on supporting patients throughout their whole cancer 'journey' especially in their lives after treatment," added Subramanian. Cancer also has a significant impact on the lives and wellbeing of adolescents and young adults, as reported in a separate ongoing study (2). Researchers set out to identify the extent of wellbeing issues and other problems in this group who not only are at major milestones in their lives but also do not expect to develop the disease. The study included patients who were newly diagnosed with cancer (n=56) and with an average age of 28. They completed a survey including questions on occupation and lifestyle, and were also asked about problems around physical symptoms, mental wellbeing and financial issues Results showed more than a third (37%) were suffering distress at diagnosis of cancer. Nearly half identified the top cause as treatment decisions, followed by family health issues, sleep and worry. Senior author Associate Professor Alexandre Chan, Department of Pharmacy, National University of Singapore and Specialist Pharmacist, National Cancer Center, Singapore, said: "The young differ from older people because they don't expect to be ill, and certainly not with cancer. They're also at a stage when they're facing many social responsibilities and family burdens. "That's why they need effective supportive care and help in managing the physical, psychological and emotional side-effects that come with both cancer diagnosis and treatment." Commenting on these studies, Ravindran Kanesvaran, assistant professor, Duke-NUS Medical School, and Consultant Medical Oncologist, National Cancer Center, Singapore, said: "There is a critical need to find ways of addressing the high levels of distress among cancer survivors in general as highlighted by the Malaysian study. "The psycho-social impact of cancer on adolescents and young adults also clearly needs further evaluation. This is to assess the impact on quality of life at the time of diagnosis as well as throughout and after treatment. "What's required are specific interventions to meet the needs of this age group, as well as specially tailored survivorship programmes and supportive care. "While it's not surprising that the young adult cancer population has a higher risk of suicide, conducting studies like this help us find new ways to address this issue effectively."

Ahmad N.S.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Islahudin F.,National University of Malaysia | Paraidathathu T.,National University of Malaysia
Journal of Diabetes Investigation | Year: 2014

Aims/Introduction: The aim of the present study was to determine the status of glycemic control and identify factors associated with good glycemic control among diabetic patients treated at primary health clinics. Materials and Methods: A systematic random sample of 557 patients was selected from seven clinics in the Hulu Langat District. Data were collected from patients' medication records, glycemic control tests and structured questionnaires. Logistic regression analysis was carried out to predict factors associated with good glycemic control. Results: Variables associated with good glycemic control included age (odds ratio 1.033; 95% confidence interval 1.008-1.059) and duration of diabetes mellitus (odds ratio 0.948; 95% confidence interval 0.909-0.989). Compared with the patients who were receiving a combination of insulin and oral antidiabetics, those receiving monotherapy (odds ratio 4.797; 95% confidence interval 1.992-11.552) and a combination of oral antidiabetics (odds ratio 2.334; 95% confidence interval 1.018-5.353) were more likely to have good glycemic control. In the present study, the proportion of patients with good glycemic control was lower than that in other published studies. Older patients with a shorter duration of diabetes who were receiving monotherapy showed better glycemic control. Conclusions: Although self-management behavior did not appear to influence glycemic control, diabetic patients should be consistently advised to restrict sugar intake, exercise, stop smoking and adhere to medication instructions. Greater effort by healthcare providers in the primary health clinics is warranted to help a greater number of patients achieve good glycemic control. © 2013 The Authors.

Dunn R.A.,Texas A&M University | Tan A.,Universiti Sains Malaysia | Samad I.,Ministry of Health Malaysia
Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention | Year: 2010

Objectives: Breast self-examination (BSE) was evaluated to see if it is a significant predictor of mammography. Methods: The decisions of females above age 40 in Malaysia to test for breast cancer using BSE and mammography are jointly modeled using a bivariate probit so that unobserved attributes affecting mammography usage are also allowed to affect BSE. Data come from the Malaysia Non-Communicable Disease Surveillance-1, which was collected between September 2005 and February 2006. Results: Having ever performed BSE is positively associated with having ever undergone mammography among Malay (adjusted OR=7.343, CI=2.686, 20.079) and Chinese (adjusted OR=3.466, CI=1.330, 9.031) females after adjusting for household income, education, marital status and residential location. Neither relationship is affected by jointly modelling the decision problem. Although the association is also positive for Indian females when mammography is modelled separately (adjusted OR=5.959, CI=1.546 - 22.970), the relationship is reversed when both decisions are modelled separately. Conclusions: De-emphasizing BSE in Malaysia may reduce mammography screening among a large proportion of the population. Previous work on the issue in developed countries may not apply to nations with limited resources.

Tan A.K.G.,Universiti Sains Malaysia | Dunn R.A.,Texas A&M University | Samad M.I.A.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Feisul M.I.,Ministry of Health Malaysia
Asia-Pacific Journal of Public Health | Year: 2011

The purpose of this study was to examine the sociodemographic and health-lifestyle factors that affect the likelihood of obesity among Malaysians. Data were obtained from the Malaysian Non-Communicable Disease Surveillance-1. The cross-sectional population-based survey consisted of 2447 observations, with an obesity prevalence rate of 17.2%. Based on logit regression analysis, the results suggest that obesity risks in Malaysia are affected by gender, education level, family history, health conditions, smoking status, and ethnic backgrounds. Specifically, Malaysians more likely to be obese are females (5.3%), lower educated (0.9%), those with history of family illnesses (4.8%), and nonsmokers (6.4%). However, Chinese (9.3%) and other (5.5%) ethnic groups are less likely to be obese when compared with Malays. Based on these results, several policy implications are discussed vis-à-vis obesity risks in Malaysia. © 2011 APJPH.

Alias H.,University of Malaya | Surin J.,University of Malaya | Mahmud R.,University of Malaya | Shafie A.,University of Malaya | And 4 more authors.
Parasites and Vectors | Year: 2014

Background: Malaria is still an endemic disease of public health importance in Malaysia. Populations at risk of contracting malaria includes indigenous people, traditional villagers, mobile ethnic groups and land scheme settlers, immigrants from malaria endemic countries as well as jungle workers and loggers. The predominant species are Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax. An increasing number of P. knowlesi infections have also been encountered. The principal vectors in Peninsular Malaysia are Anopheles maculatus and An. cracens. This study aims to determine the changes in spatial distribution of malaria in Peninsular Malaysia from year 2000-2009. Methods. Data for the study was collected from Ministry of Health, Malaysia and was analysed using Geographic Information System (GIS). Results: Changes for a period of 10 years of malaria spatial distribution in 12 states of Peninsular Malaysia were documented and discussed. This is illustrated by digital mapping according to five variables; incidence rate (IR), fatality rate (FR), annual blood examination rate (ABER), annual parasite index (API) and slide positivity rate (SPR). Conclusion: There is a profound change in the spatial distribution of malaria within a 10-year period. This is evident from the digital mapping of the infection in Peninsular Malaysia. © 2014 Alias et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Mohd-Zaki A.H.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Brett J.,Sanofi S.A. | Ismail E.,Sanofi S.A. | L'Azou M.,Sanofi S.A.
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases | Year: 2014

A literature survey and analysis was conducted to describe the epidemiology of dengue disease in Malaysia between 2000 and 2012. Published literature was searched for epidemiological studies of dengue disease, using specific search strategies for each electronic database; 237 relevant data sources were identified, 28 of which fulfilled the inclusion criteria. The epidemiology of dengue disease in Malaysia was characterized by a non-linear increase in the number of reported cases from 7,103 in 2000 to 46,171 in 2010, and a shift in the age range predominance from children toward adults. The overall increase in dengue disease was accompanied by a rise in the number, but not the proportion, of severe cases. The dominant circulating dengue virus serotypes changed continually over the decade and differed between states. Several gaps in epidemiological knowledge were identified; in particular, studies of regional differences, age-stratified seroprevalence, and hospital admissions. © 2014 Mohd-Zaki et al.

Premila Devi J.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Noraini W.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Norhayati R.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | Chee Kheong C.,Ministry of Health Malaysia | And 6 more authors.
Eurosurveillance | Year: 2014

On 14 April 2014, the first laboratory-confirmed case of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection was reported in Malaysia in a man in his mid-fifties, who developed pneumonia with respiratory distress, after returning from a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia. The case succumbed to his illness three days after admission at a local hospital. The follow-up of 199 close contacts identified through contact tracing and vigilant surveillance did not result in detecting any other confirmed cases of MERS-CoV infection.

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