Kathmandu, May 20

After a doctor working at the Epidemiology and Disease Control Division under the Department of Health Services tested positive for coronavirus yesterday, the Department of Health Services has decided to collect swab samples of persons working in the various divisions under it.

The doctor, along with a team from EDCD had visited the Tarai region to trace the contacts of persons who tested COVID-19 positive in the region. The doctor tested positive for the infection yesterday at National Public Health Laboratory.

After the doctor tested positive, three other three members of his team have been sent to quarantine.

“We have decided to collect swab samples of 150 employees working in five divisions under our department in various phases. The samples will be collected and tested using polymerase chain reaction method,” said Mahendra Shrestha, director at Department of Health Services.

“This will help us detect cases, trace and treat them early and also help prevent transmission of the infection,” said Shrestha.

The department has also decided to send employees to quarantine after they visit COVID-19 hotspots and collect their swab samples on the seventh day of their stay in quarantine.

“If they test positive, they will be sent to the isolation ward, but if they test negative, they will have to stay in quarantine for another seven days. We are looking for hotels to quarantine our staffers,” said Shrestha.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on May 21, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.