ECONOMYNEXT – Travel between provinces will continue to be restricted till July 05 despite Sri Lanka’s COVID-19 lockdown being relaxed, Health Services Director General Dr Asela Gunawardena said.
New guidelines will also be issued to shops and stalls in the Western province, he said, where daily COVID-19 cases have been high.
Sri Lanka relaxed its curfew-style movement restrictions June 21 but temporarily reimposed them again from 10pm June 23 to 4am June 25 to cover the Poson full moon Poya day, a public holiday, that fell on June 24.
Though movement was allowed, restrictions with regard to gatherings remained, with restaurants, bars, coffee shops, etc only allowed to deliver.
“We observed that people were not adhering to restrictions the past couple of days. If there is an increase in cases, we will again for restrictions,” said Gunawardena.
Sri Lanka recorded 1,941 cases on June 24, the first time in weeks that the number had dropped below 2,000. Total cases now stand at 248,050, with 32,456 patients receiving treatment in hospitals. So far, 212,825 patients have recovered and been discharged from hospital, according to official data.
With 45 deaths announced June 24, total COVID-19 deaths in Sri Lanka have increased to 2,814.
Of the total deaths, 2,205 occurred in the third wave of the epidemic that officially began on April 15, 2021.
Meanwhile, no final decision has been taken yet on the use of the Pfizer-BionTech vaccine as a the second job for those awaiting their second dose of AstraZeneca, according to Dr Gunawardena.
“The committee will meet again next week and will take a final decision on whether or not to use Pfizer,” he said. (Colombo/ June 24/2021)