Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng on May 14 called on municipal and provincial governors to further strengthen their preventive health measures as new Covid-19 cases have decreased considerably in Phnom Penh and neighbouring Kandal province but apparently increased in other parts of the country.
“The lockdown imposed on Phnom Penh and Kandal province’s Takmao town has provided us with some experience and taught us some lessons that could be applied to other provinces if necessary,” he said.
Bun Heng added that all provincial governors have to enforce the law on the control of Covid-19 and other contagious diseases and work to raise awareness about preventive health measures with their community members.
Over the last few days, the community outbreak in the capital and Kandal province has apparently begun to subside, but the number of cases found in Takeo province has been increasing.
More than 100 people there have now tested positive for the virus, most of them garment workers. On May 16 alone, Takeo province recorded 51 new infections.
Takeo Provincial Hall’s administration director Meas Uy told The Post on May 17 that the authorities were prepared to impose a lockdown on any Covid-19 hotspots there.
“Those who are infected are mostly are garment workers residing in areas adjacent to Phnom Penh. The hotspots include the districts of Bati, Prey Kabbas and Samrong,” Uy said.
The provincial authorities have expanded the quarantine centres for those who are suspected of contracting the virus and those who have been in contact with Covid-19 positive persons. Those who come from Phnom Penh and Kandal province are required to have their health checked and enter quarantine on arrival.
“We have put up heath check sites on the main national roads leading to the province. We require travellers to have temperature checks and be sprayed with alcohol. What is more important is cooperation between residents and the authorities,” Takeo provincial deputy governor Vao Sokha told The Post.
Preah Sihanouk province has been detecting cases of Covid-19 every day, prompting provincial governor Kuoch Chamroeun to temporarily restrict people’s movements in four locations in Sihanoukville on May 17. Those entering the province are expected to quarantine as well.
The four restricted locations in Sihanoukville are Yuelai Hotel, RUI LI Bank, Lan Tian Go Ji Sang Chheng supermarket in Village I of Commune III and the International Casino Wei Nysei in Village IV of Commune IV.
The restrictions came after the fast response team took throat swabs to check for infections among guests and employees in those locations and came back with positive test results for Covid-19.
“In order to prevent the virus from spreading to others, the provincial administration has decided to temporarily restrict people’s movements at these locations for 14 days,” Chamroeun said.
He also requested that the owners of the locations cooperate with the provincial working group to carry out contact tracing.
Siem Reap province has temporarily banned people from travelling to and from 16 places in the province from May 16 until further notice.
In a notice dated May 17, the provincial administration said the restrictions came about after it was determined that a Covid-19 positive patient had visited all of these places from May 11 onward.
On May 17, the health ministry logged four new deaths, bringing the total to 154. It also reported another 360 infections and 886 recoveries, bringing the tally to 710 and 2,266, respectively, in just two days.