CHENNAI: New COVID-19 clusters in college hostels pose a challenge to the health department’s efforts to control the pandemic. Recent clusters at IIT-Madras and Shri Sathya Sai Medical College have increased the State's COVID tally.
On Saturday Tamil Nadu reported 89 cases, after 42 people tested positive at Shri Sathya Sai Medical College during a saturation test. On Sunday, however, only three tested positive at the cluster.
Director of Public Health TS Selvavinayagam said most educational institutions failed to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour. "We can prevent clusters if people get vaccinated and follow Covid appropriate behaviour," he said.
Speaking on the development, Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan told The New Indian Express that multi-level supervision is needed whenever such clusters emerge. Radhakrishnan, in a message, told collectors and health officials to keep a track of students with travel history, especially those who have come from other states or participated in any cultural or sports/academic inter-state meets.
He also told officials to check for symptomatic people and carry out contact tracing. "Saturation tests should be held in case of clusters. Isolate and treat positive cases, preferably in isolation facilities, on the campus," he said.
He told the officials to ensure that eligible people are vaccinated in special vaccination camps According to public health experts, immunity as a result of vaccination and immunity developed after exposure to COVID-19 infection led to the State having about 88 per cent seropositivity, Radhakrishnan said.