Coronavirus cases in TN breach 18,000-mark, 113 die

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Chennai, Apr 30 (PTI): The number of COVID-19 cases increased further on Friday with 18,692 people testing positive across Tamil Nadu, including 5,473 in Chennai.

With the death of 113 people (52 in private and 61 in government hospitals), the fatalities rose to 14,046.

The total number testing positive till date increased to 11,66,756 and the number of active cases as of today remains at 1,15,128.

There was a slight increase in the number discharged after treatment. The number stands at 16,007 and the total at 10,37,582.

About 27 who returned from other States added to the total of 18,692.

In Chennai, 5,327 persons were discharged, and the number of recoveries stands at 2,97,838.

While 3,33,804 were the total positive cases, the active cases remain at 31,222.

Next to Chennai, Chengalpattu registered 1,215 cases, followed by Coimbatore 1,113, Thiruvallur 905, Tirunelveli 644, Thoothukudi 579, Erode 519 and Krishnagiri 510.

Meanwhile, Health Secretary Dr J Radhakrishnan informed the constitution of a COVID-19 unified command centre (UCC) at the office of the National Health Mission, Tamil Nadu, in coordination with all other line departments and directorates.

This is an initiative of the Health and Family Welfare Department, government of Tamil Nadu.

The UCC would serve as the nodal centre for managing bed availability, especially for critically ill patients and oxygen cylinder requirements in private hospitals in coordination with the existing 104 Health Helpline.

Also, the department launched its official Twitter handle @104GoTN to help provide information on beds and oxygen support for critically ill patients.

Radhakrishnan urged those needing assistance in finding beds to tag @1O4GoTN and use the hashtag #BedsForTN.

Considering the shortage of beds due to the second coronavirus wave, the State government directed the private hospitals to allocate 50 per cent of the total beds available with them for treating the coronavirus-positive patients.

A government order signed by Dr Radhakrishnan asked the private hospitals to reduce/avoid elective and planned surgeries.

Speaking to reporters earlier, he warned hoarders of stringent action if they stock or sold Remdesivir in the black market.

'This anti-vital drug has penetrated the black market from Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh. Remdesivir sold over the counter at the Government Medical College Hospital, Kilpauk, too found its way into the black market,' he said.

Already, four people, including a doctor, were arrested for illegally stocking and selling Remdesivir. About 17 vials were seized from them.

According to drug inspector Murali Krishnan, two were arrested on Friday at Perambur here for trying to sell the drug.Eight vials were seized from them.

In a similar incident, the Vepery police arrested two persons and seized six vials from them. PTI JSP NVG NVG