March 14, 2020
With the lone positive COVID-19 patient evacuated to the USA yesterday, Bhutanese travellers returning home pose the biggest threat of bringing in the virus.
Lyonchhen said all incoming travellers must declare their travel history entirely and honestly to the officials at the entry points. Two Bhutanese who lied about their travel history were detained by the police at the entry point yesterday.
He said that those declaring false travel history could face legal consequences. The travellers will be judged depending on their physical conditions and if they are returning from high risk countries.
“Even if they are not placed in the quarantine centers, they have to self quarantine in their homes,” lyonchhen said.
The 16 doctors, nurses, and health personnel who treated and attended to the American tourist are in quarantine since yesterday.
Royal Centre for Disease Control has tested samples from 238 suspects as of yesterday. Except for the American tourist, all samples tested negative. Of that, 78 are at designated quarantine centers and 17 are self quarantined.
Lyonchhen also said there are enough testing kits and medical equipment to tackle up to 40 positive cases, which is very unlikely given the precautionary measures in place.
The health ministry has placed orders for additional ventilators and equipment.
As per the His Majesty The King’s command, a fully equipped testing centre will be opened in Phuentsholing soon.
Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering said that Bhutan remains in orange zone or with moderate disruption even without a single positive case after the victim was evacuated on Friday.