Health officials raise alarm over surge in COVID-19 cases | Daily News

Health officials raise alarm over surge in COVID-19 cases

Health authorities have raised alarm over the spike in COVID-19 infections with 95 per cent of them driven by the Omicron variant, as Sri Lanka marked the first anniversary of its vaccination drive on Saturday.

Sri Lanka began its vaccination programme on January 29 last year after it received India’s gift of 500,000 doses of Covishield.

Dr. Malkanthi Gallage, who heads the Health Ministry’s home care quarantine programme, said the number of patients receiving home care has risen to more than it was during the peak of cases in August-September.

Dr.Ranjith Batuwanthudawa of the Health Promotion Bureau said 95 per cent of the cases are Omicron variant and there was a community spread. A total of 961 COVID-19 cases were reported by Friday. The daily detection had been over 900 infections for the third consecutive day.

Sri Lanka launched a booster vaccination week on Saturday as there had been a marked reluctance from public to receive the booster. Over 16.5 million of the 21 million population have received the first dose and 13.8 million the second dose.

China’s COVID-19 vaccine Sinopharm topped the vaccine list with 26 million doses followed by Pfizer with over 7 million doses, AstraZeneca with over 2.8 million doses and Moderna with 1.5 million doses.

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