Tripura identifies 22 who travelled to COVID-19 affected countries, advises them self-observation

Debraj Deb
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In this Feb. 16, 2020, photo, medical personnel scan a new coronavirus patient at a hospital in Wuhan in central China's Hubei province. (AP/PTI)

The Tripura health department has identified 22 persons who recently visited countries affected with novel coronavirus including China, Singapore and Thailand. All these persons have been advised to stay on self-observation for fourteen days after preliminary screening didn’t find positive virus infection. They were also asked to report to a State-run isolation ward at Agartala Government Medical College (AGMC), officials said.

Novel Coronavirus, renamed by the World Health Organization (WHO) as COVID-19, originated from the Wuhan province of China and has spread to several countries now, killing about 2,000 and affecting tens of thousands of others. The virus attack usually carries symptoms like fever, body ache, vomiting, diarrhea, pneumonia and breathlessness.

Speaking to indianexpress.com, Director of Health and Family Welfare Radha Debbarma said, “There is nothing positive. These are suspected cases who have visited China, Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand etc recently. We have advised them to maintain self-observation”.

These include ten persons who recently visited China, nine who travelled to Thailand, one who returned from Hong Kong and two persons who visited Singapore in the last few days.

Earlier in January, the state government sounded alert and deployed medical teams with thermal scanner devices at the airport and Land Custom Stations, Integrated Check Posts along Indo-Bangla international border, to detect if any patient carrying the disease is entering the state.

Meanwhile, a letter available with this publication, written by the District Surveillance Officer (health) of West Tripura to Medical Officer in-charge of Mohanpur Community Health Centre (CHC) says that four persons including three under the CHC’s jurisdiction were identified to have returned to Tripura after travelling to Thailand.

“As per the guideline, they have to be compulsorily monitored twice a day for a period of 28 days continuously. Now, you are hereby instructed to send health workers to the residence of the below mentioned persons and observe them properly if they have any signs and symptoms, create awareness regarding novel coronavirus in them. They also should suggest them to go to any nearest hospital for medical checkup if they suffer from any sign and symptoms during the periods of observation”, the letter reads.

This publication tried to get in touch with a private university based in Agartala, where three COVID-19 suspects are living in students’ hostel. However, the university authority declined to comment.