Colombo, Aug 14 (IANS) Sri Lanka's overall Covid-19 caseload has increased to more than 345,000 due to a rapid spread of the virus, which health experts believe is because of the highly transmissible Delta variant, according to the Health Ministry.
The caseload increased to 345,118 on Friday after 3,039 people tested positive for the virus, reports Xinhua news agency.
There are currently 34,870 active cases, and the death toll stands at 5,620, the Ministry said.
Daily Cocid-19 fatalities have exceeded 100 for three consecutive days,
Sri Lanka has been reporting an average of 2,500 daily Covid-19 cases recently amid the unabated spread of the virus.
Health officials said the Western Province, including capital Colombo, was the worst affected, while almost all major hospitals across the country have run out of beds.
Over 600 patients were also oxygen dependent, with the government announcing on Thursday that a request has been made to import oxygen from other countries.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, in a meeting with health experts on Friday, decided not to impose a nationwide lockdown but instructed officials to expedite the ongoing national vaccination program.
However, he called for tighter travel restrictions which will be announced by the Army Commander later.
Presently an inter-province travel ban is in place to prevent people from crossing the borders.
The Health Ministry has made it mandatory for all citizens to wear masks when stepping out of their houses and maintain social distance.