By A Staff Reporter Kathmandu, Oct. 29: The Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) on Wednesday confirmed 1,954 new cases of COVID in the country. With this Nepal’s tally has reached 162,354 including 121,824 recoveries and 887 deaths. Of the new cases, 843 are from Kathmandu Valley’s three districts. Of this the highest 696 were detected in Kathmandu, with 29 cases in Bhaktapur and 118 in Lalitpur. "In 8,248 Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) tests done in the last 24 hours, as many as 1,954 were found to be infected with COVID-19," informed Dr. Jageshwor Gautam, MoHP Spokesperson. Currently, there are 39,643 active cases of COVID-19 across the nation of which, 7,709 patients are receiving treatment in institutional isolation and 31,934 are in home isolation. Of the active cases, 290 COVID-19 patients are admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) of hospitals while 72 are receiving treatment with ventilator support. Meanwhile, 2,981 COVID-19 have patients recovered from the infection in the last 24 hours. With this Nepal’s totally recovery tally has reached 121,824 cases of recoveries and the recovery rate stands at 75.03 per cent. Also, 11 people succumbed to the deadly virus in the last 24 hours and with this the national COVID-19 related death tally has reached 887, according to MoHP data. Meanwhile, MoHP has requested all hospitals and medical colleges across the country to carry out free treatment for those COVID patients who cannot afford to treatment expenses. Issuing a press statement on Sunday, the Incident Command System (ICS) of the MoHP said its serious attention was drawn by information on incidents and common citizens’ complains whereby various hospitals were reportedly found asking advance money to admit COVID patients. The hospitals were also found issuing notices urging to deposit money for treatment, and in some instances barred those patients who were unable to pay the fees from treatment. The government had recently decided that it will bear all the treatment expenses of the people with poor economic conditions, senior citizens over 70 years of age, disabled, healthcare and frontline workers, among others, but that other people will have to bear their own expenses. However, later the government had further clarified that it would also bear expenses of other citizens who are unable to pay and would self-declare the same, saying that a self-declaration would suffice for that. “We have issued public notices to this effect and if any hospital is found to be going against this and barring anyone from treatment, they will be held responsible for their acts,” read the MoHP statement. Reminding that it is against the spirit of healthcare workers’ code of conduct, principles and essence of hospitals’ service to bar anyone from treatment for being unable to pay treatment expenses, it has asked the hospitals not to do so. “We request all government, community, private and non-governmental hospitals and medical colleges to carry out treatment of those COVID-19 infected patients who cannot afford the expenses freely,” read the statement issued by Dr. Guna Raj Lohani, ICS Coordinator at MoHP. No daily briefing from Thursday Meanwhile, the Health Ministry has said that there won’t be daily press briefing from Thursday. From now onwards, there will be briefing only on Sunday and Wednesday, said Dr. Gautam. For other days, the updates will be available on the website of the ministry, viber group and social media outlets.