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Infection rate up by 0.8 % after lifting lockdown, says MoHP



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By Ajita Rijal
Kathmandu, Aug. 2: COVID-19 infection rate has increased by 0.8 per cent after the relaxation of the lockdown, according to the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) with 315 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed on Saturday.
Of the 6,993 Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) tests performed in the last 24 hours, 315 persons were found infected, said Dr. Jageshwor Gautam, Spokesperson at MoHP.
Of the 315 new cases of COVID-19, six were detected in Kathmandu valley.
Presenting the 11-day comparative analysis of positive cases detected during the lockdown and post-lockdown period based on PCR tests, Dr. Gautam said, "The infection rate has increased by 0.8 per cent and has reached 3.6 per cent over the past 11 days after the lifting of the lockdown." The government had decided to lift the 120-day-long lockdown on July 21.
“Of the total 47,877 PCR tests conducted during 11 days before the lifting of lockdown, 1,345 had tested positive which is 2.8 per cent. Likewise, of the 58,174 PCR tests conducted during the 11 days after the lifting of lockdown, it resulted in 2,092 positive cases, which is 3.8 per cent. Thus, an increase by 0.8 per cent of infection is seen,” Said Dr. Gautam.
Meanwhile, 93 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals in the past 24 hours after recovering from the virus. They were receiving treatment at various health facilities across the nation. With this, the total number of recovered till date has reached 14,248. The recovery rate now stands at 72.97 per cent, according to MoHP.
Currently, there are 5,338 active cases of COVID-19 and 11,533 are in quarantine.
With this, the national COVID-19 tally has reached 20,086 including 14,492 cases of recovery and 56 deaths.
Those entering country by land to be quarantined at local level
Meanwhile, the MoHP has requested all respective local levels to quarantine people entering Nepal via land at the border points.
“For all the people arriving at and entering Nepal via land border entry points, we request the respective local levels (rural or urban municipalities), where the border entry point is located, to collect swab samples and keep the people under quarantine until the test report is out, “ said Dr. Gautam.
The MoHP made this request after receiving information that at some border points, people entering Nepal from India were reportedly sent to their respective villages without any sample collection, and urged not to do so, added Dr. Gautam.
In his closing remarks, Dr. Gautam further reiterated, “Those who enter Nepal from abroad should be kept in quarantine and their swab samples should be collected for PCR test. If the test report results is negative, the person is to be sent for self-quarantine at home, but if the test report results is positive, the person should be sent to isolation centre or hospital,” he said.
MoHP makes special request to everyone to follow safety precautions
Similarly, on behalf of the Ministry, Dr. Gautam reiterated the special request to all citizens, “Please follow all the safety precautions against COVID-19, don’t go to crowded places, maintain social/physical distance of at least two metres, mandatorily wear face masks and wash your hands with soap or sanitizer regularly and properly,” he said.
He also requested that no more than 25 people should gather and workshops, conferences, religious gatherings or even political rallies held. “If we do not follow this, it could become suicidal considering the population of Kathmandu, where holding such activities against advice can spread the infection, which would have a huge public health impact. So I request everyone to please take every precaution,” Dr. Gautam requested.  

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