Nepal’s fight against Covid second wave crippled by vaccine, oxygen shortage

Nepal, which is at present witnessing greater than 9,000 new Covid-19 instances day by day, is reeling below a well being disaster with restricted medical amenities, shortage of oxygen and quick provide of vaccines.

Nepal is ready for 1.7 million doses of the Covishield vaccine from the Serum Institute of India (SII) to vaccinate its inhabitants that has already obtained the primary shot.

Earlier this yr, Nepal received 1 million doses of Covishield. Soon, the Nepal authorities procured one other 1 million doses of Covishield by itself at a reduced price from the Pune-based Serum Institute.

Once India stopped vaccine export to take care of its home want amid a raging second wave, Nepal has been caught in a bind. Now, time is operating out for all these ready for the second dose.

READ: Nepal records highest single-day deaths related to coronavirus; aid arrives from China

“There is no clarity about what will happen to all those who received their first shot of Covishield. Do they have to go for fresh vaccination? Will they get their second shot in time? Because time is running out,” stated Kathmandu-based senior journalist Bikash Sangraula.

In the meantime, China has delivered 800,000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine and with that Nepal began its second spherical of vaccination in April.

Nepal reels below Covid second wave

Reeling below the second wave of Covid, Nepal is battling 11,000 Covid beds, 700 ventilators and solely 1600 ICU beds as per the information launched by the well being ministry in May. On May 18, Nepal reported 9,198 new instances, taking its general tally to 4,64,218. The nation has recorded 5,215 deaths (0.73 per cent CFR) (as per WHO).

“We are under-prepared, under-resourced, and under-capacitated to perform anything that is expected. Even if we wait now for the next 15 days we are going to see the surge and actually, a fallback will happen on the backlog of cases which will be there,” stated Dr Bishal Dhakal from Kathmandu.

According to Bikash Sangraula, the second wave has largely been “due to our porous border and general fatigue among people”.

“The complacency that developed after the relatively low damage that the first wave of Covid caused in Nepal made all sectors, not just the government, unaware of the magnanimity of the second wave. Last year the borders were better monitored, quarantine facilities were built. But this time the false confidence that the government and everybody, like the medical community, the media developed from the first wave, was more caught up in the political upheaval in Kathmandu and ignored the pandemic. We are paying the price now,” he stated.

ALSO READ: India only country to send liquid oxygen to Nepal amid Covid surge

KP Sharma Oli authorities lost its trust vote on May 10 and has to show its majority in one other couple of weeks to remain in energy. The authorities is not ready to make main selections to convey the nation via the disaster.

In an interview with Associated Press, former chief of the Election Commission in Nepal Bhojraj Pokharel stated, “At the moment, all the political forces should have been working together putting aside all past differences to work to end the coronavirus crisis.”

2nd Covid wave coincided with Maha Kumbh in Nepal, India

The second wave of Covid, each in Nepal and India, coincided with the Maha Kumbh, a spiritual congregation of Hindu seers and devotees. Held in April at Haridwar of Uttarakhand, it noticed a footfall of 9.1 million individuals from each the international locations.

Nepal’s former king Gyanendra Shah and former queen Komal Shah each examined Covid constructive on their return from the Maha Kumbh.

In the final week of April, Nepal imposed a whole lockdown and borders have been closed. But the numbers stored rising.

Jyotindra Sharma, a Kathmandu-based physician stated, “Right now, there are no beds available today in any hospital that is treating Covid patients. Even if there are any beds, there is a huge scarcity of oxygen. The supply of oxygen is a major problem to take new patients. And we are not even at the peak of this wave.”

“Fates of India and Nepal are intertwined because of our geographical location and shared cultural history. This battle can’t be won alone by India or Nepal. If we are to win, we have to win together and there’s no other alternative available to us,” journalist Bikash concluded.

ALSO READ: ‘Nepal overwhelmed by Covid. We need help’: Ousted PM Oli’s writes in UK daily

ALSO READ: Nepal to restart Covid-19 vaccinations after China donates doses

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