Sri Lanka's Health Ministry is looking at the possibility of setting up separate quarantine areas for passengers arriving from South Korea, Iran, Italy and China to prevent the COVID-19 from entering the country, a health ministry official told Daily Mirror yesterday.
The official said the Ministry was collaborating with the Army and other relevant ministries and agencies to identify these 'quarantine areas' in which adequate facilities will be set up for the passengers to undergo a 14 day isolation period.
Currently, there is a large Sri Lankan community present in South Korea and Italy, who are expected to return home in the coming days. However, upon their arrival in Katunayake, the Health Ministry will look to transport them to separate quarantine areas within the western province where these passengers will be monitored for 14 days.
"We are currently looking at several factors and are identifying certain areas which will have the logistics and adequate facilities. We are moving very fast and will soon act based on assessments," the senior official said.
Presently passengers arriving at the BIA from all countries are being medically checked and those arriving from the affected cities are being advised to visit a hospital to undergo a thorough medical examination.
All passengers have also been instructed to fill health declaration forms upon their arrival. According to the Health Ministry, 18 suspected patients have been warded at hospitals across Sri Lanka including the IDH and out of this, 4 are foreign nationals. (JAMILA HUSAIN)