KUALA LUMPUR, March 29 — All members of Dewan Rakyat, from both the government and the opposition, will have to undergo a health check once a year starting from the next session of the Dewan Rakyat in May.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the matter was among the items decided in the Agenda Nasional Malaysia Sihat (ANMS) Cabinet Committee meeting which he chaired today.
“The committee has recommended that health checks be held once a year, when the Dewan Rakyat session is held at Parliament Building. I myself will appear with my fellow ministers to volunteer for our health check to be done.
“This is after taking into account the fact that a total of nine elected representatives comprising MPs and assemblymen who died while serving in 2018 to 2020, due to non-communicable diseases such as kidney complications and heart attacks,” he said.
He said this in a press conference which was also attended by Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa at the Parliament building, here today.
Ahmad Zahid said that members of the Senate may also be considered to do so.
“We are not superseding Allah SWT’s law on this matter but as I said before, prevention is better than cure,”
Earlier, Ahmad Zahid said that the matter was also proposed by Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Johari Abdul in the meeting.
The Deputy Prime Minister said among other things that were also decided in the meeting was to continue the National Health Promotion Campaign to increase knowledge and awareness and to cultivate healthy living culture among the people.
He said this as the National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS) in 2019 found that one in five Malaysians have diabetes, three in 10 have high cholesterol in the body and one in two are overweight.
“The increase in diseases as a result of unhealthy lifestyles by the people puts great pressure on the health system and the country’s spending,” he said.
He said the meeting also decided to give incentives and recognition to community health agents known as MyCHAMPION to enhance the motivation and commitment of the local community.
ANMS was approved in 2020 by focusing on four Cores which are Strengthening the Promotion of Healthy Living Culture, Strengthening Health Wellbeing Services, Empowering Self Health Control and Strengthening Environmental Cleanliness.