Flood, landslides complicates Nepal’s COVID-19 response

Several thousand people were displaced with many crucial roads and bridges blocked by floods and landslides as incessant rains wreaked havoc in Nepal’s northern Bagmati province. The fresh challenges in the form of these natural disasters have completed its COVID-19 response

Jun 17, 2021
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Flood, landslides complicates in Nepal

Several thousand people were displaced with many crucial roads and bridges blocked by floods and landslides as incessant rains wreaked havoc in Nepal’s northern Bagmati province. The fresh challenges in the form of these natural disasters have completed its COVID-19 response. 

Sindhupalchok, a northern district in Bagmati province, has remained one of the worst-hit districts by flash floods and landslides. Over ten people have been killed and 31 are reportedly still missing. Several villages remained total cut-off. 

“Over 400 people, including elderly, children, and pregnant women, have already been displaced and the number could rise,” Nima Gyalgen Sherpa, chairman of Helambu Rural Municipality in Sindhupalchok, was quoted as saying by the Kathmandu Post. 

“We have been arranging temporary shelters for the displaced at schools and community buildings,” he added. 

People in other affected areas are also being shifted into shelters, thus raising fear of the further spread of the COVID-19 in the country.  Month-long restrictions have helped the country bring down the number of coronavirus infections. However, the virus has now been spreading into newer territories and in high-land villages. 

The mayhem in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic has now increased the risk of infections. There is no other option than to keep the displaced at temporary shelters, which, in turn, can turn into coronavirus hotspots.

“COVID-19 risk has not lessened yet, as we still have a high positivity rate. Ongoing natural disasters could fuel infections in the coming days,” Dr. Keshab Deuba, a public health epidemiologist in Nepal, said.