In Takeo, No Virus Cases, but Practical, Spiritual Precautions Prevail

Authorities blare announcements through speakers played from roaming trucks: Wash your hands with soap; wear a face mask; cough into your elbow.

Villagers are crafting scarecrows from old clothes, straw and household items to keep the novel coronavirus away. Buddhist monks are beating drums, chanting religious verses and sprinkling the faithful with holy water.

In Takeo province — where no one has been confirmed infected with Covid-19 — and other parts of the country, authorities are preparing health institutions and raising public awareness about preventative health measures, while religious leaders share blessings to ward off evil, ghosts and the respiratory disease.

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