King walks around the covid

For 14 months, since the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic, the king of Bhutan has been tirelessly touring the country to monitor the implementation of anti-cancer restrictions, Reuters reported.

Jigme Hesar Namgial Wangchuk wandered on foot, by car or on horseback through the 700,000-strong monarchy next to the pandemic-stricken India. Dressed in the traditional robe of gho and a baseball cap, with a backpack on his back, the king reaches even the most remote corners of Bhutan, located in almost impassable jungles inhabited by dangerous reptiles or high mountains.

On several occasions after such trips, he had to remain quarantined in a hotel in the capital, as national sanitary protocols require.

The result of the tour of the 41-year-old king, who studied in Oxford, is visible. There is only one coronavirus death in Bhutan. There are many more victims in neighboring India and China.

Often during the tours, the king was accompanied by Prime Minister Lotay Tsering, a urologist by profession. According to him, when people see the king live and hear the advice he gives them to beware of the infection, it has a much greater effect than the publication of guidelines.

In recent weeks, the monarch has been walking for five days on a path that at times reached 4,343 meters above sea level to thank health workers for their efforts in remote parts of the country.

Bhutan has one doctor per 2,000 population. Immediately after the pandemic, the country’s borders were closed, local lockdowns were introduced in some places, and testing for coronavirus was accelerated.