Kathmandu, Jan. 4: In order to prepare against the possible outbreak of Omicron, a new variant of the COVID-19, the Epidemiology and Disease Control Division (EDCD), Department of Health Services under the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) has issued a seven-point directive to health institutions.
The health directorates in all seven provinces and district health offices in all 77 districts and 753 local levels across the country have been directed to prepare against the possible spread of COVID-19, said Dr. Krishna Prasad Poudel, director at the EDCD. “Omicron is considered highly transmissible, so we need to be more attentive and proactive against its prevention,” said Dr. Poudel.
A particular gene has been found missing in a significant number of COVID-19 infected people, mostly those returning from abroad and people entering Nepal by land, which is a warning of spread of Omicron cases, said Dr. Poudel. The Omicron variant has spread in 23 states of India and more than 1,500 people have already been infected.
Nepal has detected three cases of Omicron variant of COVID-19 so far.
The EDCD has asked the public not to organise or join any kind of gathering and take all preventive measures including regular use of masks and hand washing with soap and water to stay away from the virus. Similarly, the concerned health authorities are directed to identify vulnerable zones, ensure the COVID-19 test through antigen screening and proper management of infected persons and conduct contact tracing with necessary arrangements of quarantine and test facilities.
The EDCD directive also calls for COVID-19 test of people arriving from the border areas and their appropriate management and identification of any target group missing from COVID-19 inoculation campaign.
The EDCD has also underscored the need to boost vaccination against COVID-19 among members of the community.