Public health inspectors warn cannot rule out third wave

By Vyshnavy Velrajh

Public Health Inspectors (PHI) have warned a third wave of the coronavirus cannot be ruled out during the April New Year festive season.

PHI Association Secretary M. Baalasooriya told Colombo Gazette that public activities have been normalized at present.

However, with the approaching festive season, there will be a significant increase in public activities.

Public sales with discounted products and public gatherings will commence in view of the April New Year, prompting more people to venture outdoors, he explained.

Baalasooriya said health authorities have also reduced the number of PCR tests done per day due to an increase in the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine.

He said therefore, if an infected person or his close contact visits a public area during this period, they may not be detected, resulting in a spread of the virus.

As a result, public health inspectors expect this may lead to an increase in more patients and the emergence of new clusters, he said.

The PHI Association Secretary pointed out that another key reason that could cause a third wave is the non-implementation of travel restrictions during the festive season.

He said due to a lack of restrictions, a large number of people from Colombo will travel to outside areas on holidays, while people working in Colombo too will return home for the festive season.

These people will engage in public gatherings, resulting in the spread of the coronavirus in areas outside of Colombo, Baalasooriya explained.

He said there is a likely possibility for the emergence of a new cluster as there are no travel restrictions, unlike last year.

Baalasooriya further requested the public to remain cautious when moving around during the April festive season.

He urged the public to strictly adhere to the health guidelines and the Quarantine Law in public places at all times during this period. (Colombo Gazette)

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