SLMA seeks extension to travel restrictions | Sunday Observer

SLMA seeks extension to travel restrictions

5 June, 2021

The Sri Lanka Medical Association (SLMA) earlier this week thanked President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for ordering the ongoing travel restrictions throughout the country saying it had prevented the country from a breakdown of the health system and a catastrophe.

In a letter to the President the SLMA stated: ‘We are convinced of the benefits of the lockdown to the healthcare system and, therefore, recommend a further extension of the restrictions by at least another week. There is clear and compelling evidence to support prioritisation of vaccination of those over the age of 60 followed by people with comorbidities in the age group 30 – 60 years. However, there is no appreciable benefit in vaccinating people with the highest mobility in so-called hotspots, as is currently carried out in the Sri Lankan setting. We emphasise the need of a definitive roadmap providing priority of the vaccination in certain geographical locations.

An equal amount of vaccines could also be given to hospitals to immunise high-risk people with comorbidities. Along with vaccinating high-risk persons, people working in higher numbers in enclosed areas with longer shifts in economic hubs and other essential congregate settings should also be prioritised’, the letter signed by the President of the SLMA Dr. Padma Gunaratne stated.

“We urge the Epidemiology Unit of the Ministry of Health to pay more attention to the surveillance indicators and present the data of relevant indicators to arrive at meaningful decisions”, the letter stated.