COVID-19: Community survey underway to identify extent of spread

Health Minister, Abdulla Ameen Saturday said a community surveillance study is being undertaken to understand the extent to which COVID-19 has spread in the community.

In a news brief held at the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC), Minister Ameen said the study is being conducted in Male’ as well in the atolls by taking samples from various groups and testing for COVID-19. Numerous positive cases have already surfaced amongst the samples taken from the expatriates under the study.

“Cases have been detected in unexpected locations when we randomly checked some places for COVID-19. We will continue identifying such places”, said Minister Ameen.

Minister Ameen said all the citizens have to work together, and take individual responsibility right away by practicing social distancing and staying at home in order to overcome the current pandemic situation.

Minister Ameen further said protocols are being revised based on the rate of contagion in the community. Even though the positive cases are detected in the capital city of Male', authorities are expecting the virus to spread to the atolls and are currently working with that in mind, said the minister.

In that regard, the health experts have been discussing home-quarantine people who do not require hospitalization among the people who contract COVID-19, said the minister.

“I urge you to be ready for home-quarantine in case such a situation arises. Those who test positive in the atolls may have to be isolated in a separate island within the respective atoll”, said minister Ameen.