Nearly third of COVID dead below 50 years


Nearly one-third of the novel coronavirus patients (32.14 per cent) who have succumbed to the disease in Nepal are below 50 years of age, according to the Ministry of Health and Population.

Of the 564 COVID patients who have succumbed to the disease in Nepal, 181 are aged below 50, the ministry added.

“Youths are visiting hospitals only when they are at a critical stage. This is why the death rate among youths is high. Recovery depends on whether or not the patient gets oxygen, intensive care and ventilator support on time. It all boils down to how accessible health centres and facilities are to the patient,” Anup Bastola, consultant, tropical medicine, at Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital, Teku, told THT.

“Vendors and migrant workers are at high-risk of contracting COVID-19, as they live in groups in confined spaces. Rate of unemployment in this segment is also high. As such, they are more likely to form groups, play cards and drink together, increasing the risk of infection,” Santa Kumar Das, coordinator of COVID-19 management committee at TUTH, told THT.

“Youth generally have a cavalier attitude, They might feel that they are less susceptible to the infection and as such drop their guard. They are more likely not to follow government’s health protocols.

They can even pose a risk to others by mingling in crowds even after testing positive for the contagion,” added Das.

He has a word of caution for the youths who have been working from offices, attending meetings and going out to eat with friends. “Meetings should be conducted in well ventilated rooms. One should not stay more than 15 minutes in a room that has no ventilation or where maintaining physical distance of one metre with others is not possible.

“The longer you stay in such places, the higher is the risk of contracting the virus,” said Das.

“The number of patients who are not suffering from other diseases, but have pneumonia because of coronavirus, is on the rise. Patients suffer from fever for five days and within seven days of contracting COVID they suffer from acute respiratory distress syndrome,” said Das.

As the number of youths dying of COVID is relatively high, the government should ensure that youths with symptoms should be admitted to hospitals without any delay; those in need of oxygen must have easy access to health centres and oxygen level should be regularly monitored so that their health doesn’t deteriorate, say doctors.