Three more test positive: 2 in Birgunj, 1 in Jhapa

  • Four discharged after recovering
  • Wards No2 and 3 of Birgunj sealed

Kathmandu, April 26

Two new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Birgunj Metropolitan City today, while a man tested positive for the disease in Jhapa, taking the number of coronavirus infections in Nepal to 52.

Two men, aged 49 and 55 years, from Wards No 2 and 3 of the metropolis tested positive for novel coronavirus disease through polymerase chain reaction method at National Public Health Laboratory, Teku, today. The 49-year-old man is from Ward No 3 of Chhapakaiya and has been working at the sanitation department of the metropolis, while the 55-year-old is from Ghusukapur in Birgunj. He was staying in quarantine in Siddhartha Secondary School.

“Both patients are asymptomatic and have been sent to Narayani Hospital, Birgunj, for treatment,” said Bikash Devkota, spokesperson for the Ministry of Health and Population.

“Both of them had tested negative in rapid diagnostic test earlier,” said Vijay Kumar Sarawagi, the mayor of Birgunj Metropolitan City.

“They were subjected to PCR tests as they had been in close contact with the three Indian nationals living in a mosque in Chhapakaiya who had tested positive for COVID-19,” said Sarawagi.

After the two men tested positive, Birgunj Metropolitan City sealed the two wards where the two men were residing. “We are trying to trace contacts of the men who tested positive today. We have sought mass testing of people living in the two wards,” said Sarawagi.

According to Parsa Assistant Chief District Officer Lalit Basnet, throat swabs of 187 people who had come into contact with Indian nationals living in the mosque were sent to National Public Health Laboratory in Teku from Wards no 1, 2 and 3 of Birgunj and quarantine centres in Parsa district for test.

Meanwhile in Jhapa, a man aged 50 years who had returned from India also tested positive for COVID-19 today when his throat swab was tested in Koshi Hospital, Biratnagar. “Contact tracing of the person is on,” said Samir Kumar Adhikari, chief of Health Emergency Operation Centre, Ministry of Health and Population.

In its press briefing, the health ministry stated that it aimed to collect samples of more than 1,500 people from Province 2. “So far 1,027 samples have been collected. Throat and nasal swabs of 413 people in Udayapur have also been collected. An additional 337 samples are being collected,” said Devkota. More than 50 samples have been collected from Damak after a man tested positive there. Samples will also be collected from Province 5.

Meanwhile, a 19-year-old youth and three Indians undergoing treatment in Narayani Hospital were discharged from the hospital after their recovery today. With this, the number of recovered patients has reached 16.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on April 27, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.