Triple cluster rises to 49,901, with 674 persons testing positive for COVID-19

Tuesday, 19 January 2021 02:20 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


  • 47 overseas arrivals among patients detected yesterday
  • Total patient count increases to 53,750, includes 7,660 active patients
  • 35,330 patients detected from Western Province
  • No community spread as per WHO definition: Chief Epidemiologist


By Shailendree Wickrama Adittiya

The triple COVID-19 cluster that emerged from Divulapitiya, Peliyagoda, and Prisons yesterday expanded to 49,901 patients, with 674 persons testing positive for the virus.

According to the Department of Government Information, 627 associates of the Peliyagoda cluster tested positive for COVID-19, along with 45 arrivals from Cyprus and two arrivals from the United Arab Emirates.

The country’s total COVID-19 patient count yesterday rose to 53,750, which, in addition to the triple clusters, includes 1,747 Sri Lankan returnees from abroad, 950 Navy personnel and their contacts, 651 persons linked to the Kandakadu cluster, and 141 foreigners.

Of the total count, 7,660 persons are currently under medical care. According to the Epidemiology Unit, 584 persons at the Punani Treatment Centre, 432 persons at the Kopai Treatment Centre, 408 persons at the Neville Fernando Hospital, and 344 persons at the Bingiriya Treatment Centre are among the active patients.

Hospitals are also monitoring 717 persons suspected of having COVID-19.

The Epidemiology Unit adds that 45,820 persons have recovered from the virus to date. This includes 85 persons from the Giriulla Treatment Centre, 77 persons from the Bingiriya Treatment Centre, and 44 persons from the Punani Treatment Centre discharged yesterday.

According to the district distribution of COVID-19 patients published by the Epidemiology Unit, a total of 35,330 persons from the Western Province have tested positive for the virus to date. This includes 20,670 persons from Colombo, 11,013 persons from Gampaha, and 3,647 persons from Kalutara.

The district distribution of patients also records 1,959 persons from Kandy, 984 persons from Ratnapura, and 961 persons from Galle.

A total of 763 COVID-19 patients were detected on Sunday, of which 241 were from Colombo District, 210 were from Gampaha District, 41 were from Matara, 29 were from Galle, and 28 were from Vavuniya.

The patients detected from Colombo include 51 from Mattakkuliya, 27 from Grandpass, and 22 from Maradana. Fourteen officers attached to the Sri Lanka Police and 13 personnel attached to the Sri Lanka Navy also tested positive on Sunday.

“There was a slight increase in the number of COVID-19 patients detected in the past few days. Despite this slight daily change, we do not see a change in the trend in which COVID-19 is detected in the island,” Chief Epidemiologist Dr. Sudath Samaraweera yesterday stated.

Regarding community transmission of COVID-19, Dr. Samaraweera said it was incorrect to say patients are not identified from the community. That said, there is no community transmission as per the definition provided by the World Health Organisation (WHO), he added.

Meanwhile, the Health Promotion Bureau states that 1,489,893 PCR tests have been performed in the island to date. This includes 14,984 tests performed on Sunday.

In addition to this, eight persons attached to the Health Ministry have tested positive for COVID-19 and 74 contacts have been directed for quarantine.

However, no COVID-19 patients have been detected among the staff of the Sri Dalada Maligawa, Kandy after all staff members were subjected to testing, the establishment verified in a statement issued yesterday. According to the statement, devotees will be provided all facilities to carry out religious observances in accordance with COVID-19 health guidelines.

The statement was issued after several police officers stationed at the Sri Dalada Maligawa tested positive for COVID-19.


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