IIUM gears up to welcome students back to campuses nationwide

KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 6,782 students are expected to return to the International Islamic University (IIUM) campuses in Gombak, Kuantan, Pagoh and Kuala Lumpur in stages, starting today.

IIUM chief medical officer Dr Siti Masitah Jamaludin said the university has prepared strict standard operating procedures (SOP) to welcome their return, including assisting students with Covid-19 screenings upon arrival.

“We have received about 27,044 Covid-19 self-test kits from the Higher Education Ministry, which have been distributed to our campuses.

“Upon students’ arrival, for the Gombak campus in particular, they will need to drive through the IIUM Culture Centre driveway to collect their kit and do the test,” she told reporters at the IIUM Gombak campus today.

If they test negative, they will then be allowed to proceed to their dormitories.

Dr Siti Masitah said only students with symptoms will be asked to do the Rapid Test Kit-Antigen (RTK-Antigen) tests.

“Students who test positive for the virus will be isolated and have contact tracing carried out… the usual steps we take for a Covid-19 patient.”

Dr Siti Masitah said, from mid-August until today, there have been no positive Covid-19 cases detected on campus.

“We’ve always had students within the compound as our international students have been residing here during the pandemic. And since we’ll be expecting students to return to campus in stages, we are also trying to minimise any risk of Covid-19 transmission within campus by strictly liaising with the faculties.

“Once we have identified the students coming home, we would then proceed with getting them a room at the residential area within campus. So, students will be guaranteed a room to return to,” she said.

On vaccination, Dr Siti Masitah said 97.5 per cent out of the 5,888 IIUM staff have been fully-vaccinated.

“Currently, 23 of our staff are waiting for their second vaccine jabs while vaccination for the remaining staff is pending due to health issues. We will be monitoring the situation as we go along.

“We have a database that liaises with the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) information for us to double-check our students and their vaccination status.

“This is to ensure that only fully-vaccinated students are allowed to return to campus,” she said.

The SOP, she said, is to give students as well as parents peace of mind and assurance that the campuses are safe.

“We understand that parents have their doubts, especially with students coming from all over the country.

“We have tried to accommodate and assure the students and parents especially that it is safe as we strictly follow the SOP,” she said.

First-year law student Nurin Wafa Mohd Khairi said she was thrilled to be returning to campus and to attend physical classes this semester.

“I attended my Foundation in Law classes virtually for a year. It is refreshing to be able to come back and attend physical classes.

“So far, since my arrival today, I observed that everybody strictly follows the SOP. It feels safe.

“I felt that it was time that I returned to campus for my classes as I do not want to worry my family, especially my parents when they see me getting stressed over classes at home,” said the 19-year-old from Manjung, Perak.

Muhd Syakir Shabudin, 19, from Sungai Petani, Kedah, said his parents have advised him to strictly observe physical distancing and to follow the SOP when he mingles with friends on campus.

“I understand their worries. I have my fears too at the thought of returning here.

“But seeing the SOP in place, I believe it is up to every one of us on how disciplined we are in following the SOP.

“I think if we play our parts right, then everything will be okay, InshaAllah,” he said.

Source : https://www.nst.com.my/news/nation/2021/10/736889/iium-gears-welcome-students-back-campuses-nationwide

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