Covid-19 Crisis

Infected in Dhangadi traveled to many places, contacted many

Published On: March 29, 2020 07:33 AM NPT By: DIL BAHADUR CHHATYAL

  • Family's swab samples not tested due to the lack of medium to send them to Kathmandu
  • If swab samples not sent in three days, less chances of result being accurate

DHANGADHI, March 29: The novel coronavirus infected man from Dhangadi who is undergoing treatment at Seti Regional Hospital has been found to have met dozens of people after coming to Nepal from Dubai. Talking to Republica, he said that a friend from Biratnagar was in the same Delhi – Kathmandu flight on 20 March. "At that time, we were a total of 19 people from Nepal from Dubai to Delhi, and then I was with a friend from Biratnagar for the flight to Kathmandu from Delhi," he said.

After coming to Kathmandu, he stayed at Dhapasi at his maternal uncle's house. There are four members in the family. The elder son of the maternal uncle accompanied him to the bus park for a ticket. "As the ticket was not available, he dropped me at the airport the next day. The ticket to Dhangadi was still not available, I came to Nepalgunj through Buddha Air and then from there, I took an autorickshaw to Kohalpur. From Kohalpur, I came to Attariya and then reached my house," he narrated. 

He was not home-quarantined then. He met many friends and relatives. Only after he noticed mild fever and cough he went to a doctor. This travel history of the infected has alarmed many in the locality now, though its full detail is yet to be traced. While he had reached the hospital on Tuesday, his swab sample could be sent only on Wednesday evening on a Dhangadi-Kathmandu flight.

Spokesperson for the Health and Population Ministry, Bikash Devkota on Friday declared that he has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

According to Kailali CDO Yagya Bahadur Bohora, the patient's full travel history is being sought.

Meanwhile, the patient has complained of not being taken care properly by the hospital. "I have been kept in isolation, nearby there is the corpse house, I feel nervous at night and cannot even sleep properly," he said. He added that everything he needed were being provided by his family members so far, but as they also need to go in isolation, things are challenging now.

The hospital authority has however denied his claim and expressed sadness over false rumors. According to chief of the emergency department, Jagdish Joshi, his treatment and other management are good. "At this difficult time when our health professionals have been working with dedication by putting their own health at risk, such rumors hurt, "he said. "The hospital readily provides meal for him but he himself wanted it to come from home, about isolation, it cannot be helped," Joshi added.

Another problem has surfaced for the lack of a quick way to send swab samples of the potentially infected. The family members of the infected man are concerned about their health, but testing of their swab samples could still take time, according to Joshi. Since the sample needs to be at the laboratory in Kathmandu within 48 hours, things are not easy, he said. "We have sent three samples on Friday through a vehicle," he said. "The result may come negative if the swab is not tested fresh," he added.

According to the doctors here, an ambulance was sought for this purpose, but the government has not still availed this facility. After a lockdown imposed across the country, hospitals are also suffering.

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