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Checkpoints accelerate COVID tests as Omicron rages in India

2022 Jan 04, 15:37, Kanchanpur

With the increasing number of Omicron virus infection cases in India, initiatives have been taken at the Gaddachauki checkpoint to prevent the entry of the Omicron variant. New Delhi is 352 kilometers away from the checkpoint of Kanchanpur.

Antigen test of people returning home from India via Gaddachauki checkpoint is being conducted and vaccination against coronavirus has been forwarded. The number of Nepalis returning home after leaving work has been increasing following the increasing cases of Omicron in different cities of India including Delhi, Karnataka, and Gujarat.

Chief of Health Office, Kanchanpur, Shivaraj Sunar, said, "Kanchanpur is at high risk of Omicron virus infections. We are at a higher risk as compared to others due to increasing cases of Omicron in Delhi."

He shared that they have made arrangements for coronavirus test and vaccines for those returning from India at the Gaddachauki checkpoint, adding that test of tuberculosis and malaria is also conducted along with coronavirus test.

Coronavirus was detected in four people among India returnees at the checkpoint on Monday and the collected samples have been sent to Kathmandu while keeping the infected persons at Mahakali Provincial Hospital, Sunar added.

He mentioned that they have been coordinating with bodies concerned for the arrangement of health tests in a further effective way at the checkpoint and holding centers. There is a problem in preventing and controlling the virus due to the open border.

The Health Office said preparations are on to manage tests for the COVID-19 omicron variant within the district. A PCR lab is required to detect the variant.

Far Western Province Health Directorate’s COVID-19 focal person Hemraj Joshi said they have planned to intensify the COVID-19 inoculation campaign to curb the possible infection risk from the lately detected variant of COVID-19.

“The COVID-19 vaccine coverage in the district is 54-60 percent and we have targetted 90 percent,” he said. The Province has a stock of Vero Cell and Pfizer vaccines. Testing and vaccination facilities are going on along the border areas. “Our geographical nearness with India demands us to be more attentive to the prevention of the possible entry and spread of the virus.”

Area Police Office, Gaddachauki reported the detection of five positive cases among the people who returned home from India this morning. It is said until sometimes ago, there were a couple of positive cases in a week, but these days the graph is rising.

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