More Ukrainian tourists infected despite negative certificate

More Ukrainian tourists currently in Sri Lanka have been found to be infected despite them giving a negative certificate to the authorities when they arrived in the country.

The Health Ministry said that three more Ukrainian tourists have tested positive for the coronavirus, raising the total number of infections among the touring group to six.

Health Services Deputy Director Dr. Hemantha Herath said that the foreigners had arrived in Sri Lanka with negative result certificates from PCR tests conducted in Ukraine.

However, he said that PCR tests conducted in Sri Lanka showed that some of them were infected.

He also said that while Government hospitals were prepared to provide medical care to the tourists, the tourists had some reservations.

As a result the Tourism Ministry is working with semi-government and private hospitals to provide medical care to the tourists.

A group of 185 tourists from Ukraine arrived in Sri Lanka on Monday (28), while the second batch of 204 Ukrainian tourists arrived on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Dr. Hemantha Herath said that shortcomings identified in the pilot project implemented this week to open Sri Lanka’s borders for selected tourists will be addressed.

Allegations were raised that quarantine regulations had not been strictly followed when tourists from Ukraine had arrived at the Mattala International Airport this week.

Among the allegations raised was over the welcome ceremony organized by the authorities when the tourists had arrived, which included dances and other cultural events.

The dancers were seen not wearing face masks during the performances.

Dr. Herath said that since the process was a pilot project, any shortcoming will be addressed in future.

He said that some shortcomings in the pilot project had been rectified immediately while other issues will be addressed in the coming days. (Colombo Gazette)



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