Bhutan in virus lockdown for the first time | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, August 12, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 12, 2020

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Bhutan in virus lockdown for the first time

Bhutan has been largely shielded from coronavirus but yesterday, the remote Himalayan kingdom famous for measuring gross national happiness went into lockdown for the first time. The country of 800,000 people between India and China has recorded just 113 novel coronavirus cases and is one of the few nations to report zero deaths. The lockdown ordered in the early hours of yesterday allows only essential services for an initial five to six days, said Prime Minister Lotay Tshering, a doctor who continues to practise on weekends. The announcement came after a Bhutanese woman who had returned from Kuwait and released from quarantine after 30 days tested positive. Three rapid antibody tests were positive during her time in quarantine, throughout which she was asymptomatic, but six PCR tests were all negative and she was discharged on July 26. A seventh PCR test came back positive on Monday and since leaving quarantine, the woman was found to have travelled extensively in Bhutan, mixing with family and friends and even shopping.


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