COLOMBO, July 12 (Xinhua) -- The number of positive COVID-19 patients in Sri Lanka surpassed 2,500 on Sunday after 43 new patients were detected mainly from a drug rehabilitation center in the north central part of the country, the government information department said.
The number of patients reached 2,511 on Sunday morning out of which 1,980 patients have recovered and been successfully discharged.
However, the Health Ministry said that a sudden spike in the number of cases was because of over 300 inmates from the Kandakadu Rehabilitation Center and three counselors testing positive on Friday and Saturday.
Hundreds of those who had associated with the patients had also been taken into quarantine while the Health Ministry said the army was continuing to trace further associates of the new patients so they could be put into a mandatory 14-day isolation. Those who have been put into quarantine include 70 school students.
Director General of Health Services Dr. Anil Jasingha told journalists that the situation with the latest COVID-19 cluster in Kandakadu was well under control but also said the number of patients could rise in the coming days.
He said the authorities had the know-how and confidence to control a spread and said the chances of community transmission of the virus triggering due to the new patients were slim.
"We are continuing to monitor the situation and have taken all the preventive measures," Jasingha said.
Director General of the Government Information Department Nalaka Kaluwewa in a statement denied that a curfew or a holiday would be declared in the country with a sudden spike in patients.
"The widely spreading rumor which says that government has declared holidays in the coming days is totally false," Kaluwewa said.
Sri Lanka has reported 11 deaths from the virus.