Covid-19: Situation worsening could impose a second lockdown in Maldives

Photo shows a police officer on the street during curfew hours imposed on the Male' city area as a precautionary measure against the Covid-19 virus | Photo: Sun

Male’, Maldives – If the Covid-19 situation in Maldives worsens, a second lockdown could be imposed in Maldives, warns the Technical Advisory Group (TAG).

The number of confirmed cases in Maldives have been increasing at an alarming rate for the past weeks with majority of the daily cases crossing 100. The tally has already crossed 7000, -confirming 2,000 cases in just 15 days- recording 178 infections over the past 24 hours. Maldives has up to date recorded 28 deaths as well. Health experts believe that if the country had efficient testing available, a minimum of 600 active cases would be confirmed a day.

Covid-19 has spread to all areas of the capital city, Male. The significant increase in the number of infections over the past few weeks in the capital has risen the situation level to 9. If the current situation continues to worsen, it could reach to ‘level 10′. This is very likely to impose a second lockdown in the country, TAG member Dr. Ahmed Shaheed said at a press conference held on Tuesday night by the Health Emergency Operations Centre (HEOC).

Dr. Shaheed also mentioned that although the current situation of Male’ calls for a lockdown, the measures will only be taken as a last resort since it brings difficulties and challenges along with it. He continued to say that it is therefore very important for the public to step up on personal responsibilities in reducing the spread of infections in the city.

Dr. Sheena Moosa, Public Health Specialist had also recently warned that the Covid-19 situation in Maldives is extremely grave. She said in an interview she gave to the local channel, RaajjeTV, that along with the number of confirmed cases increasing drastically, the number of people who require hospitalization has also increased significantly. The doctor added that about 62% percent of hospital beds in the Greater Male’ being are already occupied is a huge cause for concern.

Even though the number of fatalities being recorded are comparatively less in the country, Dr. Sheena warned that the increase in the amount of people getting treated in ICU could increase the death toll in the coming days.

“In other countries, a large number of people passed away because the healthcare system was overburdened and could not cater to them. The numbers kept rising at such a fast pace that no beds were available for incoming patients, no doctors and nurses were available to cater to them,” Dr. Sheena said, noting that the Maldives is close to reaching this point as the country does not have enough doctors and nurses to cater to the rising number of patients.