Coronavirus hits Kerala, 7 under watch in Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur, Kozhikode, Pathanamthitta

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The epicentre of the coronavirus is Wuhan, in China. (File Photo)

At least seven people, who have shown symptoms of respiratory problems, have been admitted to hospitals in Kerala and will be tested for coronavirus. Two of the seven have been admitted to a Kochi hospital, while one each is in hospitals at Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur, Kozhikode and Pathanamthitta. They will be admitted for 28 days. Read in Malayalam

Officials in the state said at least 73 others are being kept under close watch at their homes, reported news agency PTI.

Meanwhile, four people who were admitted to hospitals in Mumbai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad tested negative for the virus Friday. "ICMR-NIV Pune has informed that 4 samples (2 from Mumbai, 1each from B'luru & Hy'bad) have tested NEGATIVE for nCoV. One of Mumbai patients has tested positive for Rhinovirus, one of the routine common cold virus," the ministry said in a tweet.

International airports in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Cochin have set up thermal screenings for the passengers returning from mainland China and Hong Kong.

Delhi's All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has also set up and isolation ward and kept beds ready for providing treatment to any suspected case of respiratory infections. "We have an isolation ward and we have beds kept ready for providing care and treatment for suspected coronavirus cases in Delhi or elsewhere in India," said AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria.

"All precautionary measures —in terms of personal protection equipment for healthcare workers to prevent the spread of the disease while treating infected patients — are in place," he added.

The official also added that on the basis of details provided by the Indian Embassy in China, 25 students who had returned recently from Wuhan are also being monitored closely.

"No passenger with history of visit to Wuhan city of China in the last 14 days was found positive (for the virus) during thermal scanning," the official said.

In Mumbai, as many as 1,789 passengers underwent thermal screening at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport since January 19. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has created an isolation ward at the Kasturba hospital.

"The isolation ward has been created for diagnosis and treatment of persons suspected to have the virus infection," said Dr Padmaja Keskar, executive health officer of the BMC.

"Doctors at the airport have been asked to send travellers returning from China to the isolation ward if they show any symptoms of the novel coronavirus. All private doctors in the city have been asked to alert us if they observe symptoms of coronavirus in any person who has returned from China," she added.

Apart from Kasturba Hospital, quarantine facilities have also been provided at Pune's Naidu Hospital.

(With PTI inputs)