COVID-19 outbreak: Authorities race to hint, isolate UK returnees; new coronavirus pressure present in Nigeria


As per the Centre’s SOPs issued on Tuesday, passengers coming from the UK ought to endure RT-PCR take a look at and be remoted in a separate unit of an institutional facility if discovered constructive

Health authorities in Africa on Thursday mentioned that one more mutation of the novel coronavirus seems to have emerged in Nigeria.

This, as India continued racing to hint and isolate passengers who lately returned from the United Kingdom, the place a variant of the novel coronavirus has been spreading.

Media reports mentioned that flyers from the UK, together with some who have been discovered COVID-19 constructive, had gone untraceable and officers in Uttar Pradesh saying that they have been discovering the telephones of UK returnees switched off.

A lady who returned from UK and was discovered constructive in Delhi was traced to Andhra Pradesh and Meghalaya barred the entry of UK returnees within the state.

Meanwhile, the Karnataka authorities revoked its order for imposing evening curfew within the state whereas Punjab lifted evening curfew for Christmas.

UK returnee traced to Andhra Pradesh

A coronavirus constructive lady, who allegedly gave the slip to authorities at a quarantine facility in Delhi, was picked up from Rajamahendravaram in Andhra Pradesh and admitted to a hospital alongside together with her son, reported information company PTI quoting well being officers. However, the girl instructed authorities in Andhra Pradesh that solely dwelling quarantine was really helpful for her and she left New Delhi on her personal as a result of she was asymptomatic, sources instructed the information company.

Deputy Chief Minister (Health) AKK Srinivas instructed reporters that the 47-year-old lady examined constructive for COVID-19 however was asymptomatic. Her 22-year-old son, who had gone to select her up in Delhi, examined unfavourable for the virus, he mentioned.

Both have been admitted to a hospital and saved in remoted rooms. Preliminary assessments on the girl didn’t reveal the brand new COVID-19 pressure and so they have been awaiting outcomes from the NIV.

As the girl and her son travelled by first AC coach in a prepare, that they had little contact with different passengers, as per the information company.

Reacting to reports of two COVID-positive flyers from the UK slipping out from the Indira Gandhi International airport, Delhi well being minister Satyendar Jain mentioned that the town authorities would speak to the airport authorities.

Eleven UK returnees discovered COVID constructive in Goa

The tally of UK returnees discovered COVID-19 constructive continued to go up. Eleven individuals who got here to Goa from the UK have examined constructive for COVID-19 , mentioned well being minister Vishwajit Rane whereas seven such circumstances have been additionally detected in Telangana and have been hospitalised. One one that lately arrived from the UK additionally examined constructive in Maharashtra’s Nagpur.

“We don’t know whether it is the old mutant or new mutant (of the virus). He has mild symptoms and as a precautionary measure, he has been kept at a different ward in the Government Medical College and Hospital here,” Nagpur Municipal Commissioner  Radhakrishnan B instructed PTI.

Official sources instructed PTI that 5 individuals with current journey historical past to the UK have been detected in Meghalaya to date, and well being employees are presently attending to them. The entry of people from the UK into the state has been barred and the federal government has urged individuals who have lately returned from Britain or transited by the nation to remain in isolation and inform it about their journey historical past.

Rane additionally mentioned that RT-PCR testing of 979 passengers, who got here to Goa from the UK after 9 December, is presently happening.  In Punjab, civil surgeon Dr Ravinder Singh Sethi mentioned that as many as 216 passengers, who might have are available contact with eight (together with a crew member) discovered constructive on a Air India flight from London to Amritsar on 22 December can be despatched to institutional quarantine.

The samples of those that examined constructive have been despatched to superior labs for additional testing to find out if they’ve contracted the brand new virus pressure from UK.

Tamil Nadu well being secretary J Radhakrishnan mentioned the UK returnee who had examined COVID-19 constructive in Chennai was receiving therapy and added that he was secure and doing properly. Asked concerning the genomic evaluation results of the pattern despatched to the Pune-based NIV, he mentioned institute authorities have indicated that it could be anticipated on 28 December and Tamil Nadu has requested it to expedite the provision of end result.

As per the Centre’s SOPs issued on Tuesday, passengers coming from the UK ought to endure RT-PCR take a look at and be remoted in a separate unit of an institutional facility if discovered constructive. India has suspended all passenger flights connecting the United Kingdom until 31 December or until additional orders.

In Uttar Pradesh, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of Lucknow, Sanjay Bhatnagar, on Thursday the checklist of passengers obtained from the Centre mentions cellphone numbers of about 4 dozen passengers who arrived from the UK since 24 November.  “But the list does not have their addresses. Phone calls to most of the mobile numbers are either not being received or are switched off,” the official mentioned.

Maharashtra amends SOPs 

Amended its Standard Operating Protocol, the Maharashtra authorities on Thursday mentioned that passengers arriving from Europe, South Africa and West Asia is not going to be subjected to RT-PCR take a look at for coronavirus instantly upon arrival.

A round mentioned the take a look at can be carried out on the resort the place the passenger is quarantined between fifth and seventh day and added that the price of take a look at can be borne by the passenger. If the report is unfavourable passenger can be discharged from institutional quarantine however she or he must keep in isolation at dwelling for an additional seven days.

If the result’s constructive however the affected person continues to be asymptomatic, she or he will keep in institutional quarantine on the identical resort or at COVID-19 hospital for 14 days, the round acknowledged.

Karnataka withdraws evening curfew

Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa in a press release, mentioned: “In view of the public opinion that there was no need for night curfew, the decision was reviewed and after consulting with Cabinet colleagues and senior officials it has been decided to withdraw the night curfew.”

The order was rescinded only a day after the evening curfew was introduced. Yediyurappa had initially introduced on Wednesday that the evening curfew can be imposed from 23 December until 2 January between 10 pm and 6 am. Changes in evening curfew dates and timing have been introduced later with Yediyurappa tweeting that it will likely be from 24 December until 1 January 2021, between 11 pm to five am (2 January, 5am).

The determination to impose evening curfew had drawn flak from the ruling in addition to the Opposition events.

The chief minister on Thursday appealed to individuals to train self-restraint by carrying facemasks, hand hygiene and social distancing to forestall the unfold of the coronavirus .

The Punjab authorities adopted swimsuit in asserting relaxations within the evening curfew. Chief Minister Amarinder Singh mentioned evening curfew within the state can be lifted on Thursday for Christmas. Restrictions will even be eliminated in Fatehgarh Sahib from 25 to 27  Decemberfor Shahid Sabha, he mentioned.

Meanwhile, head of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, John Nkengasong instructed reporters that one other mutation of the virus appears to have emerged it Africa however added that added that additional investigation was wanted. “It’s a separate lineage from the UK and South Africa,” the official mentioned.

The variant in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, was present in two affected person samples collected on 3 August and on 9 October in Osun state, reported The Associated Press citing a working analysis paper.

Unlike the variant seen within the UK “we haven’t noticed such speedy rise of the lineage in Nigeria and should not have proof to point that the P681H variant is contributing to elevated transmission of the virus in Nigeria. However, the relative distinction in scale of genomic surveillance in Nigeria vs. the UK could indicate a decreased energy to detect such modifications,” the paper stated.

Nkengasong said on Thursday that the new virus variant in South Africa is now the predominant one there, as confirmed infections in the country approached one million. South Africa on Wednesday recorded its highest daily spike in infections, with more than 14,000 new confirmed cases and more than 400 deaths.

‘New virus variants less likely to change efficacy of vaccines’

Back in India, the head of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) Dr Rakesh Mishra met Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu in Hyderabad to brief him about the new strains of SARS-Cov-2 found in the UK and South Africa.

Mishra apprised the vice-president that the mutations in the new strains are less likely to change the efficacy of the vaccines under development. Besides, there is no evidence that suggests the strains are associated with worse outcomes for the patients, although they are more infective, he said, as per an official statement. The same disease management strategies are expected to work for the variants too, the statement said.

States prepare for vaccine rollout

The senior scientist’s remarks came as states are gearing up for vaccine storage and rollout. A list of people who should be inoculated on priority in Tamil Nadu is ready and 21,000 personnel were being trained and 46,000 centres identified in the state for the rollout of the immunisation exercise after the vaccine is made available, PTI quoted the state’s health secretary as saying.

The comprehensive list, including about five lakh health workers, all other frontline personnel like those from municipal administration, revenue and police, the elderly and those with co-morbidities is ready, said Radhakrishnan, adding that requisite infrastructure to handle the immunisation drive like cold chain facilities was also ready.

“Vaccines are anticipated in January. The approval for vaccines ought to come from the Centre,” he mentioned.

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal additionally mentioned the state authorities is totally ready to obtain, retailer and administer COVID-19 vaccine to 51 lakh precedence class individuals within the metropolis within the first section of vaccination.

“There are a complete of 51 lakh precedence class individuals in Delhi — three lakh well being employees, six lakh frontline employees, and 42 lakh of these aged above 50 and people under 50 however having co-morbidities,” the chief minister said at a virtual press briefing. Each person will be given two doses, and a total of 1.02 crore doses will be required in the first phase of vaccination in Delhi, he said.

Kejriwal asserted that his government is all set to start the vaccination drive as soon as it gets the vaccine from the Centre, and registration is underway for people in the three priority categories.

Zydus Cadila seeks nod for phase-3 trials

In another development on the vaccine front, Drug firm Zydus Cadila on Thursday claimed its vaccine against COVID-19 , ‘ZyCoV-D’, has been found to be safe, well-tolerated and immunogenic in the Phase I/II clinical trials, and the company is seeking regulatory approval to commence Phase-III trials.

“The firm is now planning to provoke Phase III scientific trials in round 30,000 volunteers upon receiving vital approvals,” Zydus Cadila mentioned in a press release.

The Phase-II research ofZyCoV-D was carried out in over 1,000 wholesome grownup volunteers.

India’s COVID-19 caseload on Thursday rose to 1,01,23,778 with 24,712 new infections being reported in a day, while the recoveries surged to 96.93 lakh, according to the Union Health Ministry. The toll increased to 1,46,756 with 312 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 am showed.

The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 96,93,173 pushing the national recovery rate to 95.75 percent, while the COVID-19 case fatality charge stands at 1.45 p.c.

The COVID-19 lively caseload remained under 3 lakh for the third consecutive day. There are 2,83,849 lively coronavirus infections within the nation which comprises2.80 p.c of the full caseload, the info confirmed.

“A internet decline of 5,391 circumstances from the full lively caseload was registered within the final 24 hours,” the ministry said. Daily recoveries have outnumbered the daily new cases after nearly a month (27 days), it added.

Maharashtra has reported the highest number of 7,620 single-day recoveries, followed by 4,808 in Kerala and 2,153 in West Bengal in a span of 24 hours.

The ministry said 76.48 percent of the new cases are from 10 states and UTs. Kerala reported the highest number of 6,169 daily new cases, followed by Maharashtra and West Bengal with 3,913 and 1,628 infections respectively.

Ten states and UTs account for 79.81 percent of the new deaths. Maharashtra saw the maximum casualties (93). West Bengal and Kerala reported 34 and 22 new deaths respectively.

With inputs from agencies



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