Nepal | August 03, 2020

Backlog of swab samples piling up in Bheri Hospital

Himalayan News Service
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Four days have passed, since the swab samples of 53 staffers of Internal Revenue Office, Nepalgunj, Banke, were collected. But the reports have not come yet.

The office was closed since Sunday after a section officer and a non-gazetted officer tested positive for coronavirus.

Many service seekers have returned after reading the notice at the office. The office could not resume services as all the staffers are awaiting their test report before resuming work.

All the samples were sent to Bheri Hospital for tests.

Swab samples collected from Banke and Bardiya, among other districts, were sent to the Nepalgunj-based Corona Laboratory of Bheri Hospital. The lab has a large backlog of swab samples collected in the last five days.

The government had given permission to a private laboratory to conduct tests, but no samples were sent to the private laboratory.

Prasanna Mishra, chief at the Corona Laboratory in Bheri Hospital said that it would take at least three days to test the backlog of swabs in the laboratory. The swab samples were collected from Banke, Bardiya, Dang, Pyuthan and Salyan, among other districts.

Technician at Bheri Laboratory Prachanda Gautam said that around 700 swabs were tested on a daily basis.

He said that around 500 to 600 swab samples reached the laboratory daily.

The government had given permission to Bageshwori Diagnostic Centre and Polyclinic to test samples, but the centre has not received any sample to test.

Operator Bimal Budhathoki of the polyclinic said the government had not sent samples for testing till date.

Chief District Officer Ram Bahadur Kurumbang, who is also the District COV- ID-19 Management Centre Coordinator, said the swabs would be sent to the private lab for testing if the government laboratory could not carry out tests.

He said that the private lab was not used as Bheri lab had assured it would complete all the tests on time.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on July 30, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.

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