Sri Lanka has confirmed over 1,111 Coronavirus cases on April 28 with domestic cases reaching 1,096 as authorities traced contacts and restrictions were placed in a third wave of infections that was spreading in the country.
It is the highest daily Coronavirus cases confirmed in a single day and the first time the total has topped 1,000. Eight deaths were reported taking the total to 655.
On April 28, new areas in Wellawaya, Buttala, Uhana and Matale were isolated.
Sri Lanka is seeing spike in Covid-19 pneumonia cases and patients requiring oxygen in the current wave and the country is running out of hospital capacity.
Up to April 28, 7,984 persons were in hospital or treatment centres. Authorities have said Sri Lanka is running out of intensive care and hospital facilities.
As public health inspectors tracked contacts of hospitalized patients large numbers are turning positive with a new SARS-Covd-2 strain spreading after New Year celebrations in April.
“Unlike in the first and second wave, the spread is very bad (ithamath darunu widiyata),” Neelika Malawige a professor at Sri Lanka’s Sri Jayewardenepura University told reporters on Friday.
“Earlier one or two got infected from one person, this time five or six seems to be contracting the virus. That is why we should be careful.”
“Now people are no longer scared of Coronavirus in Sri Lanka. That was reasonable since 97 percent were asymptomatic earlier. But it is not the case now. Even younger people showing intense (darunu) symptoms.”
World Health Organization has also confirmed that airborne transmission was taking place and that a virus could remain in a room for around 1.5 hours, she said.
Airborne transmission means that even if the person is no longer in a location, people who subsequently visit could get it.
Sri Lanka has closed schools and asked persons to stay at home as much as possible.
It is not clear whether the new variant developed domestically or it was imported. Sri Lanka has relaxed quarantine for vaccinated arrivals.
Sri Lanka also has seen a high incidence of smuggling after money printing triggered import controls.