Coronavirus — 62 New Cases in Kathmandu Valley

At least 62 people have been infected with coronavirus in three districts in the Kathmandu Valley. According to spokesperson Dr. Jageshwor Gautam, spokesperson at the Ministry of Health and Population, 56 infected people have been found in Kathmandu, three in Lalitpur, and three in Bhaktapur.

The first case of COVID-19 pandemic was confirmed in Nepal on 23 January 2020 when a 31-year-old student, who had returned to Kathmandu from Wuhan on 9 January, tested positive for the disease. As of 8 August 2020, the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) has confirmed a total of 22,592 cases, 16,313 recoveries, and 73 deaths in the country.

In a 24-hour update, 106 people were confirmed infected in the Kathmandu Valley on Friday. The government said on Friday that the risk of sudden coronavirus infections had risen across the country, including in the Capital Valley, but that it had managed to limit the number of infections to less than previously thought.

According to an epidemiological estimate of the number of people infected across the country, 91,000 active infections reported in the worst-case scenario by July 10 and 39,000 active infections in the moderate case by August 20.

As of Friday, July 8, the total number of infected people has exceeded 22,000 while the number of actively infected people is 6,330. Dr. Gautam told a press briefing:

“Due to the effective response of the Government of Nepal, the state governments, the local levels, and the unprecedented support of Nepali citizens and stakeholders, the number of actively infected people has been kept to a lesser extent than expected.”

1,500 Critically Ill Patients can be Taken

Until a few weeks ago, 99.7 percent of infected people in Nepal showed no symptoms, but in recent days, the number of serious illnesses and deaths has been steadily rising. As of July 8, about 64 critically ill people are being treated in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), including three on ventilators across the country.

Province No. 2 has the highest number of 32 people in ICU while Bagmati Province has 29 people in ICU including three on ventilators. There are two in Province No. 5 and one in Province No. 1 in the ICU.

Amid concerns that the country’s hospitals could not cope with the growing number of critically ill patients, the health ministry said it now has a stockpile of medicines and ICU supplies for about 1,500 critically ill patients.

“Laboratory materials are in stock for two months and PPE for two months. Also, work is underway to procure additional necessary materials,” Dr. Gautam said. According to the latest information provided by the Ministry of Health, there are currently 2,600 intensive care unit beds and 900 ventilators across the country.

The Kathmandu Valley, historically known as Nepal Valley or Nepa Valley, lies at the crossroads of ancient civilizations of the Indian subcontinent and the broader Asian continent, and has at least 130 important monuments, including several pilgrimage sites for Hindus and Buddhists. There are seven World Heritage Sites within the valley.

“Of these, 250 ICU beds and ventilators have been added for the treatment of COVID-19 patients and the process is underway to add another 240 ICU beds,” he said.

According to the ministry, 36 hospitals and 115 COVID-19 clinics have been identified. The hospital beds are reserved for critically ill Coronavirus patients with no symptoms, no other serious illnesses, and the infected under the age of 60 can be isolated at home under the supervision of a local health worker, the spokesperson said.

The Cost of Treatment

The government has also fixed the treatment cost of COVID-19 patients. Accordingly, Rs. 200 per patient per day has been fixed for the remuneration of health workers for those living in isolation at home.

Rs 2,000 per day for treatment in isolation centers, Rs 3,500 for moderately hospitalized patients, Rs 7,000 per day for moderately complex patients, and Rs 15,000 per day for intensive care unit patients.

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Joyce Davis

My history goes back to 2002 and I  worked as a reporter, interviewer, news editor, copy editor, managing editor, newsletter founder, almanac profiler, and news radio broadcaster.

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