No new COVID-19 cases

Kathmandu, March 30

The government has conducted a total of 993 tests for COVID-19 infection as of this afternoon, including 76 tests today. There were no new positive results today, which means there are four active cases and one cured case in Nepal.

As far as provinces are concerned, a total of 217 samples have been collected for testing, according to Spokesperson for the Ministry of Health and Population Bikash Devkota.

A total of 93 individuals are in isolation in various provinces, while there are seven in isolation in the Kathmandu valley.

Devkota said contact tracing and testing of all four active positive cases was under way. He also said tests conducted so far of contacts of the four infected were negative. “The person who died in Butwal yesterday tested negative for COVID-19 infection,” said Devkota.

He said each of the seven provinces presently had at least 100 personal protective equipment to be used by medical professionals treating COVID-19 patients. The equipment that arrived from China yesterday has been dispatched from Kathmandu, some have already reached while others will reach soon.

Of the COVID-19 paraphernalia that arrived from China, the government has dispatched at least 1,000 PPE; 10,000 gloves; and 20,000 face masks to each of the seven provinces.

“We sent the kits to Dhangadi, Surkhet and Biratnagar via air, while in the rest of the provinces the materials were dispatched via surface transport,” said Devkota. “The consignments also include other medicines and medical equipment such as chlorine.”

The new lab set up in Dharan has started functioning in full swing, with 19 tests so far, and six additional samples being tested. Additional laboratories will be set up at Dhangadi, Surkhet, Butwal and Janakpur. The testing equipment that arrived from China yesterday will be dispatched there to set up laboratories.

“Although we’ve received demands from places such as Pokhara, Dang and Hetauda also, we will gradually address those demands in the future,” said Devkota. “Since the reagent used for testing should be kept at less than -20 degree Celsius, it should be transported very carefully. Therefore we are in the process of sending those materials. We will soon start operations there. All the testing machines have been set up, and are ready for use.”

Devkota also informed that local governments had so far maintained records of 41,100 individuals coming from various other countries during the lockdown period. He said the number was rising as the local levels continued to update the records.