NRN death toll tops 70; 5,000 infected

Seventy-three non-resident Nepalis have died of coronavirus as of Saturday evening.

According to the Non-resident Nepalis Association (NRNA), 49 of them died in the United Kingdom. Fifteen have died in the United States, five in the United Arab Emirates and one each in Ireland, Japan, Turkey and the Netherlands, said Dr Sajiv Sapkota, coordinator of the NRNA health committee.

The number of those infected with the deadly virus in different countries has reached 5,247. So far, 1,570 have recovered from the disease. The number of infected continues to rise in some Gulf countries, Dr Sapkota said. Some 2,300 Nepali workers are reported to have been infected in the region.

According to data compiled by the committee, Nepalis have been infected with coronavirus in 27 countries. The umbrella body of the non-resident Nepalis has provided relief to those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in 45 countries, NRNA General Secretary Dr Hem Raj Sharma said.

More than 35,000 NRNs have benefitted from the support. The NRNA has been collecting details about the state of coronavirus among NRNs in association with Nepali doctors working in those countries, Nepali diplomatic missions, NRNA chapters and local organisations.

Kit shortage halts testing in Rukum East

Rukum East, a district in State 5, is facing difficulty in carrying out the Covid-19 testing due to a shortage of Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) kits. Consequently, the test has been halted for the past two weeks.

A total of 162 people have entered the district from India and other third countries in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. More than 1,000 people have entered the district from other districts.

The provincial government has supplied only 160 testing kits to the district. According to District Public Health Office (DPHO), Rukum, 129 people, who returned home recently from abroad, have undergone the RDT and they all tested negative. The antibody test of the remaining has been put on hold due to the kit shortage. Yadav Prasad Sharma, officiating chief at the DPHO, said they had requested the provincial government for more testing kits.

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