Katari Municipality sets up isolation facility after protests from localsCovid-19 patients from the municipality had to go to isolation facilities in the neighbouring Sindhuli district for treatment.
Katari Municipality in Udayapur district has set up an isolation ward to provide health services to Covid-19 infected people following protests from the locals for its negligence in taking measures to fight the pandemic.
“We had repeatedly asked the municipality to establish an isolation facility but it hadn’t done so,” said Pushkar Khadka of Katari Bazaar.
Covid-19 patients from the municipality had to either self-isolate at home or go to the isolation facilities at Dudhauli Municipality of neighbouring Sindhuli district.
“It’s better late than never. The locals now don’t have to travel to other districts to seek treatment for Covid-19,” said Khadka.
The municipality has completed all necessary preparations to establish a 30-bed isolation facility at Taraghari in Katari Municipality Ward No 3.
“The building used to be occupied by the Nepal Army. The army vacated the building and handed it to us to set up an isolation facility. But we had to manage funds before setting up the facility,” said Om Mishra, information officer at the municipality. “The facility is now completely equipped to accommodate Covid-19 patients. It has electricity, water supply, toilet and internet.”
The number of Covid-19 cases has increased in Katari Municipality in the past one week. As many as 30 people, including Mayor Gyanendra Shrestha, chief administrative officer Ganesh Aryal and education unit chief Surya Karki, tested positive for the disease within a week. All municipal services have been closed until October 31 after the municipal officials got infected.
“The municipality spent Rs 2.2 million in setting up the facility. Efforts are underway to manage funds for its operation,” said Mishra.
Mayor Shrestha says the municipality decided to set up the isolation facility keeping in view the increasing number of Covid-19 patients in home isolation.
“There is a risk of community transmission of the disease, as the people staying in home isolation do not follow health protocols. We realised that the infection rate could be high due to a lack of isolation facilities in the municipality,” said Shrestha. “It was necessary for us to establish an isolation facility here to contain the disease.”
According to the health unit of the municipality, the doctors working at Katari Hospital will provide health services at the isolation ward.
“Other health workers from the municipality have also been deployed in the facility,” said Suresh Dahal, the health unit’s chief. Dahal said the isolation ward would provide health facilities from Wednesday.
A total of 208 people have tested positive for the virus in Udayapur district so far.