DHADING, July 3: Bagmati Province, with a record of more than 5,000 foreign returnees except from India, is now facing the challenge of conducting COVID-19 test of all these individuals.
Witnessing a surge in COVID-19 cases in foreign countries, most of the Nepali migrant workers have chosen to return home. Due to the lack of testing kits, laboratory and other equipment, throat swab samples of most of the foreign returnees have not been collected and those previously collected samples also await testing.
These migrant workers who returned from foreign countries are kept at various holding centers in Kathmandu. After COVID-19 test, they are supposed to return to their respective districts. There, they have to stay in quarantine facilities for 14 days or in home quarantine for 21 days. However, due to the lack of equipment, the province has been unable to conduct the COVID-19 tests rapidly.
In the view of containing the increasing number of COVID-19 cases, Bagmati Province is all set to enhance the capacity of laboratories, increase PCR testing and manage other essential equipment, according to the Ministry of Social Development, Bagmati Province.
As of Thursday, 7,654 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests were conducted in Bharatpur Hospital Chitwan. Similarly, 7,473 PCR tests were conducted, of 7,550 samples collected in Dhulikhel Hospital, Kavre and, of 7,902 swab samples, 310 samples await testing in COVID-19 Laboratory, Hetauda .
Bagmati Province conducts COVID-19 tests from seven different COVID-19 laboratories including four within the Kathmandu Valley.