3,676 persons test positive for COVID-19, highest number detected in a day

Thursday, 19 August 2021 00:19 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • Total patient count rises to 369,359, includes 84,332 from Colombo District
  • 46,397 persons under medical or home-based care
  • Proposal to import 360,000 litres of liquid oxygen approved by Cabinet
  • Trade unions to self-isolate if lockdown not announced by Friday

By Shailendree Wickrama Adittiya

Health authorities stated that 3,676 persons tested positive for COVID-19 yesterday, raising the country’s total detections to 369,359.

This is the highest number of COVID-19 patients detected in a day, with 3,623 cases detected on 19 May and 3,609 cases detected on Tuesday.

The patients detected yesterday include 3,660 persons from the New Year cluster and 16 overseas arrivals.

In total, 262,918 patients from the New Year cluster have been detected. The Prisons cluster, which is also currently active, has 7,980 patients. The country’s imported cases consist of 6,699 Sri Lankans and 328 foreigners.

This includes the patients detected on Tuesday, of which 3,550 persons were from the New Year cluster, 54 Sri Lankan overseas arrivals, and five persons from the Prisons cluster.

According to the Health Promotion Bureau, 15,552 PCR tests and 5,657 rapid antigen tests were carried out on Tuesday. A total of 19,021 PCR tests were carried out yesterday.

The district distribution of COVID-19 patients shows 84,332 persons from Colombo, 67,295 persons from Gampaha, 39,271 persons from Kalutara, 18,671 persons from Galle, and 17,729 persons from Kurunegala.

During the third wave of the pandemic, 52,035 persons from Colombo, 48,761 persons from Gampaha, and 32,213 persons from Kalutara tested positive for COVID-19.

According to the Epidemiology Unit, 316,528 persons have recovered from COVID-19 to date. This includes 2,188 persons who left treatment centres yesterday.

At present, 46,397 persons are under medical or home-based care and hospitals are observing 3,524 persons suspected of having COVID-19.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet yesterday approved a proposal to import 360,000 litres of liquid medical oxygen required for COVID-19 patients. This is in addition to approval granted previously to import and store 120,000 litres of liquid oxygen on a monthly basis.

According to Director General of Health Services Dr. Asela Gunawardena, 184 beds out of 186 ICU beds are currently occupied and there are 86 patients in other intensive care units as well.

Regarding data discrepancies, Dr. Gunawardena said all inaccuracies in Gampaha District data have been fixed and the correct data has been published. He assured that Uva Province and Eastern Province data inaccuracies will be fixed and published as well.

While strict health guidelines were issued by the Director General of Health Services, health sector trade unions have stated that they are prepared to go into self-isolation on Monday if a total lockdown is not announced by Friday.

However, Cabinet Spokesperson Dullas Alahapperuma yesterday said that while the Government did not hold an unwavering stance against imposing a countrywide lockdown, the Health Ministry had decided on vaccination and partial reopening as the best course of action.



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