Covid crisis to deepen in Sri Lanka, warn health experts

The Covid situation is likely to get worse in Sri Lanka in the coming weeks, health experts warned, as the deadly Delta variant spreads throughout the country

Aug 04, 2021
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Covid crisis to deepen in Sri Lanka

The Covid situation is likely to get worse in Sri Lanka in the coming weeks, health experts warned, as the deadly Delta variant spreads throughout the country. Three out of every four positive patients showed the presence of the Delta variant, according to the result of a recent genome sequencing. 

By mid-July, the Delta variant was responsible for around 25 percent of daily cases, which rose to around 75 percent, according to a recent study. Hospitals across the Western Province are struggling to cope with the rising cases as more and more patients are now needing oxygen supply. 

Despite increasing the capacity of oxygen-aided beds, the rising number of patients has become a cause of concern for the country’s health planners.

“We are struggling to give these patients oxygen not because we lack oxygen, but because we did not expect this much of patients. We were ready with oxygen beds, but this is beyond imagination,” a doctor at the Colombo District Hospital, was quoted as saying by the Daily Mirror.

“I foresee in near future we will have more patients who need oxygen and we will not be able to provide them with oxygen,” he added.

Right now, the fear among them is if the country is headed for a India-like situation when the pandemic claimed thousands of lives earlier this year. 

On the vaccination front, the island nation has so far vaccinated at half of its eligible population with at least a single dose. By the month-end, the country planned to administer at a single dose to all the eligible people above 30. 

Dr. Hemantha Herath, the deputy director-general of health services in Sri Lanka, said that restrictions were in place to keep a balance between economic activities and preventive measures. However, he added that restrictions would be tightened if the situation deteriorates. 

Recently, the country eased significant restrictions, lifting the ban on inter-provincial travel and resuming public transport.


(SAM) 

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