KATHMANDU, August 2: Doctors say the opening of public transport from business centers and non-compliance with public health standards have contributed to the rapid spread of COVID-19.
According to the doctors, many of the COVID patients that are being admitted to the hospitals went to the vaccination center a week ago to get vaccinated. “Five days after vaccination, they were admitted with fever,” said COVID-19 Coordinator of TU Teaching Hospital Dr Santa Kumar Das.
Doctors pointed out that if the public health standards are not followed in time, the infection rate may reach a new high. According to Das, the current COVID infection is not seasonal but a result of violation of public health standards.
“Looking at the scenario the patients seem to have been infected at the vaccination centers and the vaccine certification line,” Dr Pun added.
In Nepal, the second wave of COVID infection has gone into acute crisis again as the prohibitory order was lifted without any control measures. Violation of public health standards is seen as the main reason for the spread of COVID infection, Dr Das said.
Besides, the government needs to re-close public transport, markets and other places where people gather. "If public buses and markets are not closed again, the infection could spread like it did in the second wave," he said. He said that both the government and the people have to strictly adhere to the standards of public health as the hospital is still not fully equipped after the second wave hit the country. “Even with oxygen, and enough beds to admit the patients, the health manpower is not ready to deal with yet another crisis,’ said Dr Das.
“As a large number of people are yet to be vaccinated, the government should start vaccinating everyone,” Dr Pun suggested. “The vaccination should be provided by making the vaccination center safe. The government can use open spaces for safe vaccination centers.”
He said that strict adherence to public health standards is the main measure, as those who have been vaccinated and those who have not been vaccinated have the same viral load, and those who have been vaccinated are more likely to transmit the virus.
"Looking at the patients who came to the hospital, those who were vaccinated and those who were not vaccinated showed the same viral load of COVID-19," he said.
According to Pun, if everyone can be vaccinated as soon as possible in Nepal, the risk of COVID and deaths from it can be avoided.