The Malaysian Health Ministry’s director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah said on December 13 that the decision is based on the latest scientific evidence and practices in other countries.
He said several countries have reviewed their mandatory quarantine periods, and have shortened them from the initial 14 days.
Britain, Germany and Belgium have shortened the quarantine period to 10 days, while in France, it is only seven days, he said, adding the highest risk of infection is in the first week of exposure.
The 14-day quarantine was recommended after the World Health Organisation and other experts estimated that the incubation period is between two days and 14 days. Studies suggest that the average time for symptoms to appear after exposure is five days.
The pandemic continues complicated development in this Southeast Asian country. As of December 13, the country documented 84,475 infections, with 415 deaths.