Coronavirus News LIVE Updates: Karnataka health minister K Sudhakar on Saturday said 14 people who have come to the state from the UK so far have tested positive for COVID-19 and their samples have been sent for genetic sequencing

A health worker collects sample for COVID-19 test at a KSRTC bus stand in Bengaluru. PTI

Coronavirus News LATEST Updates: Karnataka health minister K Sudhakar on Saturday said 14 people who have come to the state from the UK so far have tested positive for COVID-19 and their samples have been sent for genetic sequencing to find whether it is a new strain of virus that has infected them.

Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja said on Saturday that samples of eight returnees were found positive for COVID-19 and their samples have been sent to NIV for further tests.

India’s daily new COVID-19 fatality count was reported below 300 after over six months, taking the toll to 1,47,343, while the infection tally rose to 1,01,69,118, according to the health ministry.

A total of 251 more deaths and 22,273 new infections were reported in a 24-hour period, the health ministry said on Saturday.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), as many as 16,71,59,289 COVID-19 samples have been tested till 25 December, of which 8,53,527 samples were tested on Friday alone.

India recorded 22,272 new cases of COVID-19 and 251 deaths in a span of 24 hours, according to the Union Health Ministry. With the fresh infections, country’s overall count has now climbed to 1,01,69,118.

In the ongoing door-to-door contact drive being conducted by the Delhi government to test UK-returned passengers for prevalence of COVID-19 , eight have so far been found infected with the coronavirus , officials said on Friday.

A total of 19 passengers out of over 13,000 who landed from the UK at the IGI airport here between 25 November and 21 December have been found positive for the virus.

Eleven were tested positive at the airport while eight others were found positive during the door to door contact and testing drive being carried out in all the districts of the city, said a top Delhi government source.

“All the 19 positive patients have been admitted to the special facility set up at LNJP hospital where they will undergo genome testing to determine whether they are infected by the super spreader strain of the coronavirus that has been reported in United Kingdom,” the source said.

So far, one person each in the south east and south west districts of Delhi who returned from the UK in recent weeks were reported positive for the virus. The remaining positive persons were residents of other districts.

A person from Dwarka in south west Delhi who had returned from the UK on 19 December has been diagnosed as COVID-19 positive. The father of that person has also tested positive but he is asymptomatic, an official said.

The whole family has been quarantined in an institutional facility, the official said.

In New Delhi district, the UK-returned passengers are being tested through RTPCR tests. No one has tested positive so far, they said.

The door-to-door contact and monitoring is also underway to keep watch on the persons who returned from the UK in the last few weeks. Among them, those showing even the slightest symptoms are being RTPCR tested, they said.

Out of the over 13,000 passengers who landed at IGI airport from the UK, around 1400 have been identified as Delhi residents, officials said. The list of passengers provided by the Bureau of Civil Aviation is being sorted and all the Delhi residents who returned from the UK are being contacted, they said.

Delhi health minister Satyendar Jain said on Wednesday that tracing and testing of all those who travelled to Delhi from the UK in the past two weeks will be ensured.

Delhi government is aware, and all the people who have travelled from the UK to Delhi in the past two weeks will be traced, tested and advised quarantine, he had said in a statement.

The authorities have enhanced monitoring of city residents who returned in the past few weeks from the UK to prevent any violation of home isolation, Delhi government officials said on Wednesday.

Teams of health department and civil defence volunteers have been deployed at the district level to keep watch on those persons who returned from the UK between 25 November and 23 December and tested negative but have to undergo home isolation.

The government has set up a separate facility at the LNJP hospital for those passengers from the UK who were found COVID-19 positive in RT-PCR tests conducted at IGI airport, for their treatment and genomic testing, officials said.

Besides, a five star hotel in Aerocity near the airport has been earmarked as paid quarantine facility, while a COVID-19 care centre in south Delhi will serve as a free institutional isolation facility for passengers from flights in which positive cases are detected, they said.

Those passengers who have returned from the UK in the past few weeks and are found negative will undergo two weeks home isolation followed by another two weeks period under observation, officials said.



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