The risk of COVID-19 spread at the community level has increased after Nepali migrant workers in India started returning to their homes from different border points of Sudurpaschim Province.

The risk of virus spread has increased after people started visiting their houses directly without undergoing antigen test for COV- ID-19 in the border areas.

Cases of the COVID variant Omnicron have spiked in the border areas of late. Nepali workers in India have started returning to the country from different states of India.

The government has started conducting antigen test at Gauriphanta, Gaddachauki, Jhulaghat, among other places of the province.

Hundreds of Indian returnees, however, did not undergo test for COVID-19 even though antigen testing was managed in the border areas. These India returnees have helped fuel the outbreak of the first and second wave of coronavirus in the community level. The new variant has also spread in the community level due to the same reason.

The number of patients has increased in Sudurpaschim Province.

As many as 722 have tested positive for the virus in the province.

Of them, 530 people have recently returned from India. As many as 1,622 people returned from India two days ago. Of them, 148 tested positive for the virus, while 50 of them visited their houses without undergoing tests for the virus. It is very difficult to manage people testing positive for the virus in the border areas due to the large number of returnees. Heath offices of Kailali and Kanchanpur districts are jointly operating the health desk and carrying out tests in Gauriphanta border point.

Chief at District Health Office, Kailali Lal Bahadur Dhami said they had been managing health centres to carry out tests of India returnees. "Available manpower and resources have been used to carry out the test in the areas," he added.

He said people testing positive for the virus would be taken to Beli-based isolation centre in Dhangadi sub-metropolis.

A version of this article appears in the print on January 14, 2022, of The Himalayan Times.