Recently, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Kedah campus collaborated with other groups of volunteers to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) for frontliners in Kuala Muda District, which has the largest COVID-19 cases in Kedah, a state situated in the northern part of Malaysia.
The project, a joint effort between the Faculty of Art and Design, UiTM Kedah Women’s Club (PEWANI), Staff and Welfare Club (KSUK), Batik Merbok Group and students, was spearheaded by Dr Wan Noor Faizah Wan Omar, Head of Learning Centre and Dr Noreha Che Sidek, Head of Kedah Campus Health Unit. The first 2,000 units of face shield were successfully distributed in April 2020 to government hospitals such as Yan Hospital (HY) and Sultan Abdul Halim Hospital (HSAH), the Health Department of Kedah State and to the police manning the roadblock checkpoint at Semeling, Kedah.
The face shield project was initiated by taking into consideration the availability of material, competitive cost, and the readiness of students on the campus to facilitate the production process. The project provided the opportunity for 30 students who remained on the campus to support the community service project during the movement control order (MCO), a prevention measure in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Esterina a/k Tanjong, an undergraduate from Sibu, Sarawak said ‘we are happy to contribute to the frontliners’. Along with 30 other students, Esterina fabricated the face shield using standardized designs developed by the Faculty of Art and Design. Production schedules were staggered with only 4-5 volunteers per session to ensure the adherence to social distancing guidelines. During the MCO, students followed closely all safety instructions such as the correct and frequent hand washing, use of hand sanitizer, social distancing and always trying to maintain good physical and mental health.