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Sri Lanka curfew made nation-wide till May 04 from tonight as infections jump to 649

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has imposed a nation-wide curfew from April 30, 2000h till May 04 as new infections of Coronavirus were detected driven mainly by a cluster of military officials who went on leave.

The President’s office said a curfew which will be imposed at 2000 hours on April 30 on most districts will continue till May 04.

Sri Lanka has seen a surge of new infections after military officers from a Navy base in Welisara went on leave during curfew hitching rides on trucks taking food, though there was a ban on inter-district movement.

The health ministry said total infection grew to 649 by 1130 hours on April 29, rising by about 30.

The infections in the Navy base had expanded amid calls to widen testing of high-risk groups.

From publicly available information those involved in contact tracing and quarantine were not randomly traced.

Advocata Institute a Colombo-based think tank had warned that waiting passively for symptomatic persons to turn up in hospital was a serious flaw in Sri Lanka’s anti-coronavirus strategy.

It also called for voluntary testing of asymptomatic persons after curfews lift to detect any unknown clusters.

Related

Sri Lanka should allow active, private, voluntary Coronavirus tests on high risk groups as curfews lift: Advocata

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Concern had been growing at the denial of voluntary testing to asymptomatic persons combined with no community sample tests.

With the increase in new cases, Sri Lanka is expanding hospitals.

Patients are housed at the main Infectious Disease Hospital in Colombo, the Welikand, Colombo East Iranawila, Kathankudy, Minuwangoda, and Navy Hospital in Welisara, the head of Sri Lanka’s Health Service Anil Jasinghe said.

The Homagama base hospital which was housing suspected cases had been converted to treatment hospital.
(Colombo/Apr30/2020-sb)

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