Intense testing of people coming from outside Bihar needed: Nitish

Patna, Apr 26 (PTI) Urging people not to conceal their travel history, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Sunday said continuous and intense testing of those coming from outside the state is needed to contain the spread of COVID-19.

He appealed to people to go for testing if they develop coronavirus-like symptoms.

Kumar said earlier, people coming from foreign countries were found to be infected with the coronavirus and subsequently, those who came in contact with them also tested positive, but now, a new trend is being witnessed with the infection spreading among people from migrant labourers or those who have come from other states.

Door-to-door screening must be intensified to check the new pattern of the infection, the chief minister said.

Kumar, who held a review meeting with the chief secretary and senior officials, took stock of the measures being undertaken to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

The health department should ensure the availability of ventilators, testing kits, personal protective equipment (PPE), medicines and other necessary equipment, he said, assuring that funds will not be a problem for tackling COVID-19 as adequate money is available in the Coronavirus Eradication Fund.

Kumar also asked the officials to remain alert and vigilant regarding acute encephalitis syndrome, Japanese encephalitis, bird flu and swine fever, besides COVID-19.

The process for contact tracing, sample collection and testing should be expedited in order to break the chain of the virus, he said.

Stating that there is no need to panic, Kumar said COVID-19 patients are going home after getting fully recovered from the disease.

Everyone should follow the social-distancing norms, he said, while appealing to people to remain alert, cautious and healthy. PTI AR SOM RC