SL reports 2nd COVID-19 death, cases reach 122

  • Tue,31 Mar 2020 08:24:06 AM

Colombo, March 31 (IANS) Sri Lanka has recorded its second COVID-19 death, as the total cases increased in the island nation to 122, it was reported on Tuesday.

Five new cases were reported on Monday and with the second death recorded the Government urged the public to comply with COVID-19 countermeasures, while applauding public resilience in the face of hardship, the Daily Financial times said in a report.

The second victim, a 64-year-old male resident of Kochchikade, died at the Negombo hospital on Monday evening after being transferred from a private hospital in the area. The victim was tested positive for the virus earlier in the day.

According to the Information Department, the victim was believed to have a long-term respiratory illness and also suffered from heart disease.

Addressing the media, Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi urged the public to comply with the public health regulations put in place to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Wanniarachchi addedthat Sri Lanka has managed to maintain a low impact ratio in comparison to developed countries due to early action and strict enforcement.

Health Services Director Anil Jasinghe told the media that the home delivery mechanism for medicines was launched on Monday, with 1,100 private pharmacies earmarked to deliver medication to those who received treatment at private health institutions.

Patients who have obtained prescriptions from Government hospitals and clinics will have their medication delivered to them via the Postal Department, the Daily Financial times quoted Jasinghe as saying.

The delivery of medicines has become a serious issue with many people taking to social media to vent frustration at the inefficiency of the system put in place.

Many complained that the telephone numbers which were introduced for patients to send their prescriptions to the said pharmacies for deliveries are unreachable.

"There will be some issues but I am confident in a few days this system will work well, even in rural areas," Jasinghe added.

Meanwhile, a curfew currently in force in the districts of Colombo, Gampaha, Kalutura, Puttalam, Kandy and Jaffna will continue until further notice, the President's Media Division said on Monday.

In all other districts, curfew which was re-imposed at 2 p.m. on Monday afternoon will continue till 6 a.m. on Wednesday.

The villages of Atalugama in the Kalutara district and Akurana in Kandy have been declared completely isolated areas.

No one is allowed to enter or leave from these two villages until further notice.

--IANS

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