Almost one and a half year since the first COVID case was reported in the country on March 5, 2020, Bhutan continues to get positive cases. Bhutan expected that after the COVID-19 vaccine, the situation in the country would be normal but it turned out just the opposite with a rising number of cases.
Prime Minister Dasho (Dr) Lotay Tshering during a live address said with that the cases coming from Merak-Sakteng, there is every risk of the cases coming into the interiors and causing community transmission if people are not careful.
He said if there is community transmission then Bhutan can expect to go the same way what the neighboring countries are going through. Prime Minister reiterated and pleaded with the public to wear masks all the time, maintain social distance and avoid gatherings.
He said Ministry of Health is ready with COVID-19 resources for healthcare facilities.
Phuentsholing is one the high risk place and there are 72 COVID-19 patients in RIGSS isolation center and if there are more cases coming in then it may not be able accommodate them so, under His Majesty’s command the new DGPC office will also be turn into COVID-19 isolation center which can accommodate up to 200 patients.
The PM said that people should be prepared for lockdowns at any moment if there are cases in places like Thimphu. He said a lot of testing is going on with 1,500 tested in Thimphu within 24 hours. He said large amounts of tests have been done in Phuentsholing and Samdrupjongkhar.
The team is still investigating the outbreak reported from Merak-Sakteng in Trashigang dzongkhag.
Travel out of Trashigang has been forbidden and anyone who traveled out recently are asked to test themselves.
Meanwhile, 36 new cases were reported on Friday and all are Bhutanese nationals. One imported case is from Paro, two from Thimphu and four from Phuentsholing. 2 frontliners from Phuentsholing and 1 is a contact in Trashigang. There are 4 contacts and one is from the flu clinic in Phuentsholing. Jomotshangkha reported 8 cases which are six cases from the Army camp, one from Jomotshangkha Throm and one in Lauri. 5 from facility quarantine in Samdrupjonkhar are first contacts.
There are another eight cases from Khashateng in Merak gewog under Trashigang dzongkhag.
A total of 1,411 positive cases were reported so far in the country with 224 active cases and 1,186 recovered cases.