Sri Lanka Coronavirus toll goes to 11, public holiday declared – Updated
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has reported new cases of Coronavirus (COVID19) on Saturday taking the total in hospital to 10, while a Chinese national had been discharged earlier, and authorities have banned public gatherings.
Sri Lanka’s zoological gardens would close and Monday March 16 had been declared a holiday as part of measures to contain the spread of the virus.
A 56 year old lady who had returned from Italy on March 07, became the 10th Sri Lankan confirmed.
A 17-year old girl who was the relative of a previously confirmed case was the was the 09th Sri Lankan, the information office said later Saturday.
The state information office said late Saturday that another 42 year old quarantined returnee had been confirmed.
Earlier in the day a 44 year old male from Italy who was in quarantine and was in Polonnaruwa hospital was confirmed with the disease the head of Sri Lanka’s health service Anil Jasinghe told reporters.
A 43 year old returnee from Italy who was from Naththandiya, but not in quarantine, was also confirmed and was being treated at Kurunegala hospital.
Sri Lanka’s health minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi said public gatherings will need police permission since in other countries large meetings were a source of infection spread.
Of the confirmed patients, most had returned from Italy, while two were locally infected from an Italian tour group and one person had returned from Germany.
As of Saturday 103 suspected patients were being treated at 18 designated hospitals around the country.
Over 1,600 were in quarantine centres by Saturday afternoon, Jasinghe said.
Up to now Italy had been linked to all except one of the Sri Lankans infected with Coronavirus.
Sri Lanka asked airlines not to board any traveller from nine European countries, Iran and Korea.
(Colombo/Mar14/2020 – Update III with 08 th Sri Lankan citizen confirmed)