An Echelon Media Company
Friday September 30th, 2022

Slight increase in COVID-19 cases in Sri Lanka; WHO report indicates 22 pct hike

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is seeing a slight increase in the average number of COVID-19 cases being reported, according to government health officials, while a World Health Organisation (WHO) report showed a 22 percent increase since June.

“There is no significant increase, up till the recent past the average cases reported were around ten but there has been an increase in the average from 15 to 20 cases per day,” Deputy Director-General of Public Health Services Dr Hemantha Herath said on Monday July 18.

However, due to this minor increment, health officials are monitoring and taking precautionary measures to prevent the formation of new COVID-19 clusters in Sri Lanka.

As per the Epidemiology Unit at the Ministry of Health, cases since July 11 are an accumulative 158 while the moving average per day is 22 cases.

The number of inward and home based and waiting to be admitted cases have increased in the past week has increased to a total of 411. Recoveries for this week has been a constant of three per day.

Sri Lanka’s total confirmed COVID-19 infections have now reached 664,414.

As per the WHO’s weekly global report, “the South-East Asia Region has been reporting an increasing trend in cases since early June, with over 164 000 new cases reported, a 5% increase as compared to the previous week.”

Four out of 10 countries for which data were available showed increases in the number of new cases at 20% or greater, with some of the greatest proportional increases observed in Nepal (516 vs 268 new cases; +93%) and Sri Lanka (106 vs 87 new cases; +22%), the report said.

Meanwhile, Sri Lanka has also seen an increase in influenza which is considered normal for this time of the year, said Dr  Herath, due to weather and seasonal conditions. Dengue, too, is spreading in Sri Lanka and mild dengue patients are categorised as influenza patients due to the symptoms observed.

The BA.5 is a sub variant of the highly contagious omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 has yet to be identified in Sri Lanka, according to Dr Herath. The strain, which originated in South Africa in February, is currently the dominant variant in the US.

The new variant is reported to be highly transmissible and vaccines are said to have a comparatively lower response rate to it, though severe disease has been found to be lower when vaccinated.

Sri Lanka is now offering the fourth dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, which can be obtained at the nearest Medical Officer of Health (MOH) vaccination centre. The vaccine is recommended for everyone over the age of 20 and is highly recommended for citizens above the age of 60 and those above 20 with comorbidities.

The newly emerged variant has been classified as the “worst version of the virus we’ve seen”, by Eric Topol, a cardiologist and professor of molecular medicine at Scripps Research. (Colombo/Jul18/2022

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.