ECONOMYNEXT – With a spike in daily infections, a 28-percent increase in Sri Lanka’s COVID-19 deaths can be seen compared to the previous week, State Minister of COVD-19 Control Dr Sudarshini Fernandopulle said on June 10.
Sri Lanka recorded 67 COVID-19 deaths including an eight-day-old baby from Gampola from May 17 to June 08, the highest confirmed death count the health ministry has confirmed in a single day, bringing total deaths to 1,910.
Sri Lanka recorded 2,735 cases on June 09, a majority of whom were found in the Gampaha, Colombo and Kalutara districts of the Western province.
Out of the 1,910 deaths, 1,128 are male while 782 are females, official records show.
A majority of the deaths reported are between 65 -75 years of age. Official records show that 28.43 percent are between 76- 90 years of age, 19.21 percent are 46-60, 6.13 are 31-45, 2.77 percent are above the age of 90 while rest are below 30 years of age.
Total COVID-19 cases in Sri Lanka so far are 213,396. Over half of these – 115,965 cases – were found in the so called New Year cluster that emerged after the Sinhala and Tamil New Year holidays in mid April 2021.
Health Services Deputy Director Dr Hemantha Herath said 76 patients are now receiving intensive care unit (ICU) treatment while another 28,391 have been admitted to 164 treatment centres.
Sri Lanka is currently battling six variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
According to Dr Chandima Jeewandara of the University of Sri Jayawardenapura, the B.1.1.7 (Alpha) variant and B.1.411 Sri Lankan variant are the most commonly found strains in the island.
The director of the university’s Allergy Immunology and Cell Biology Unit said genome sequencing of samples collected since May 01 show that the highly contagious Alpha variant is spreading in Colombo, Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Kuliyapitiya, Wariyapola, Habaraduwa, Thissamaharamaya, Karapitiya and Ragama areas.
A foreign national at a quarantine facility tested positive for the the B.1.617.2 (Delta or Indian) variant while a Tissamaharama resident has tested positive for the B.1.411 or Sri Lankan strain.
Jeewandara said a Sri Lankan traveller who recently tested positive for the Dela strain in Melbourne, Australia, reportedly starting a cluster of the deadly variant there had not arrived from Sri Lanka.
Australian media, however, reported that he had indeed flown in from Sri Lanka. (Colombo/June10/2021)