Enforce public health guidelines in hotels and restaurants or shut them down, Health Ministry tells Covid committeePublic health officials consider hotels, restaurants and roadside eateries as potential infection hotbeds.
The Health Ministry on Monday requested the Covid-19 Crisis Management Centre either to ensure physical distancing at hotels and restaurants as well as roadside eateries or shut them down completely.
The ministry request comes amid a spike in the number of coronavirus cases in Kathmandu Valley.
Public health officials consider hotels, restaurants and roadside eateries as potential infection hotbeds, since they have not been enforcing social distancing rules and other public health measures among their patrons.
“If hotels, restaurants and roadside eateries are not managed or shut down completely, it will be very difficult to curb new infections,” said Dr Sameer Kumar Adhikari, joint spokesperson for the Health Ministry. “We have also asked to regulate the public places and the movement of public vehicles.”
The ministry had written twice to the centre asking it to curb the entry of people to Kathmandu Valley from other parts of the country and to re-impose odd-even rules for vehicles to slow the infection rate after the end of lockdown.
The government had lifted a nationwide coronavirus lockdown after nearly four months on July 21. Public mobility in the Valley has increased ever since. Already, coronavirus infections have been detected among many people who did not have the history of traveling to the disease-hit areas or coming in close contact with the infected people.
“The risk of a massive outbreak in Kathmandu has increased seriously,” Adhikari said. “People are coming directly from India and from the Tarai districts to Kathmandu despite the said restrictions in the movement of vehicles.”