Strict COVID-19 health guidelines for Avurudhu | Daily News

Strict COVID-19 health guidelines for Avurudhu

Legal action against violators
Aim to prevent spike in cases

Stern legal action will be taken against those who violate COVID-19 health guidelines issued by the Health Ministry for the upcoming Sinhala and Tamil New Year (Avurudu) season.

Deputy Director General Health Services (DDGHS) Consultant Dr. S.M. Arnold said a set of guidelines has been issued by the Director General of Health Services under the Quarantine and Prevention of Diseases Ordinance to thwart a possible surge of Coronavirus cases during the New Year period, when large numbers head to their hometowns for the celebrations.

He stressed that the people should not become complacent and must continue to follow all COVID-19 precautions such as physical distancing, wearing masks and washing hands frequently with soap and water or sanitizer. Health experts have warned of a third wave of the pandemic if people do not follow these and other safety precautions.

The Health Ministry has restricted festivals celebrating the upcoming Sinhala and Tamil New Year to 100 persons at a time, with a ban on a number of Avurudu games, especially contact games such as pillow fighting and tug-o-war to minimise the spread of COVID-19.

According to the guidelines issued for New Year celebrations, organisers of festivals must produce a document agreeing with the Ministry guidelines to the local Medical Officer of Health and the relevant municipal or urban council prior to organising the event. This also prohibits all quarantined citizens, people diagnosed with COVID-19 and their family members from entering these festivals.

Chief Epidemiologist Dr. Sudath Samaraweera stated that the total number of COVID-19 positive patients detected in the country has increased to 93,993.