Sunday, August 2, 2020

Government urges children below 12 and elderly above 60 not to go out of home

Health Ministry has requested children below 12 and elderly above 60 years of age not to come out of houses due to growing risk of novel coronavirus in recent days.
The Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) spokesperson Dr Jageshwar Gautam – speaking during a regular press briefing today – said that the government has requested the citizens to be careful due to rising number of Covid-19 cases throughout the country.
“A lot of people over 60 years of age are already suffering from diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure,” he said, adding that they are likely to succumb to Covid-19, if they get exposed to the coronavirus. “Likewise, children below 12 rarely maintain physical distance and wear masks increasing the risk of the Covid-19 infection.”
According to the ministry, the coronavirus infection rate has increased by 0.8 per cent after the lifting of the lockdown on July 21. The number of deaths, too, has increased sharply in recent weeks. Some of the major cities like Biratnagar, Birgunj, Jhapa, Janakpur are becoming hotspot for the coronavirus, whereas Kathmandu Valley is also under the threat. Biratnagar, Birgunj, Rajbiraj, Jhapa, Janakpur, Bara and several other cities in districts bordering India – after new cases increased at a rapid rate since the lifting of the lockdown – re-imposed lockdown.
“Kathmandu Valley could be a new hotspot for the coronavirus, as it is densely populated, crowds are growing in public places and public movement is not regulated,” health experts said, adding that the number of people entering Kathmandu Valley from hard-hit areas is growing every day.
Thus, they have also recommended another lockdown in Kathmandu Valley as the risk of coronavirus spread has risen several fold since the end of nation-wide lockdown.
As thousands have been entering the Valley every day from across the country, as well as from India, the number of people testing positive among them is also growing. “It cannot be ruled out another lockdown in the Valley, if the number of cases kept rising at the current rate,” an official at the Covid-19 Crisis Management Center (CCMC) said, adding that the coronavirus infection rate in the Valley will go out of control, if restrictions are not re-imposed.
The Epidemiology and Disease Control Division has also recommended the Health Ministry to impose another lockdown in the Valley. “It is very difficult to contact tracing,” the department officials said, adding that they don’t know how many people the infected-ones have met and which public vehicles they rode. The division has also reported the situation in the Valley to the Health Ministry
“There must be strict restrictions on people from entering Kathmandu Valley,” joint-spokesperson for the Health Ministry Dr Samir Adhikari said, adding that a surveillance study – based on the swabs of 10,000 people, who entered the Valley last week, by the Health Ministry showed that 0.7 per cent of the people coming into the Valley are infected with the coronavirus. “All samples are yet to be tested but 0.7 per cent of the samples tested so far have come positive, which is alarming.”
The Health Ministry has also recommended re-imposing the odd-even rule for public as well as private vehicles, like before the lockdown that ended on July 21, the government had allowed the movement of private vehicles under the odd-even rule.

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