Facemasks and hand sanitizers run out due to COVID-2019 scare

Thimphu city is running short of face masks and hand sanitizers even as panic breaks out among the residents with an American tourist detected with COVID-2019 yesterday. 

People are worried about an outbreak and they are rushing to every medical shop. Due to a shortage of hand sanitizers, people are even using alcohol products like rock-bee to wash their hands and some are using mufflers to cover their mouth and nose in public. 

The medical shops in Thimphu are trying to meet the epic demand. The crowds in queue are creating traffic congestion.

A notification was issued saying that the government is taking all necessary precautions. The government has informed the general public to maintain personal hygiene and avoid public gatherings. However, the authorities said that the supply of stock, gas, basic necessities, essential commodities, and other goods will not be interrupted.       

One of the pharmacy staff from Norling said, “A buyer will get to buy a quota of only 20 masks and we are already in short of masks and hand sanitizers.”

Medical staff from another pharmacy in the city said that they have already run out of masks and hand sanitizers and hoped that other pharmacies have stock of masks for the people.

A Thimphu resident, Tshewang Norbu said, “I went to many medical shops and I found face masks and hand sanitizers already out of stock.” He added if people rush to the pharmacies there are chances of them contracting the virus.

It was seen in a social media post that a woman from Punakha was using a plastic bag to cover her face in the public. 

The panic of the moment could be summed up in the words of a shopkeeper in Thimphu: “I am shell-shocked and utterly speechless!”

Sonam Tashi from Thimphu