ITANAGAR: A total of 18 persons who had come in contact with the lone COVID-19 patient in Arunachal Pradesh have tested negative for coronavirus, a health official said on Monday.
Their samples were sent for tests to the Regional Medical Research Centre (RMRC) in Assam's Dibrugarh, Lohit District Medical Officer (DMO) Dr S Chai Pul said.
"The COVID-19 patient had defied quarantine and visited a place of worship where he came in contact with fellow worshippers" she said.
The coronavirus patient had attended the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi's Nizamuddin area, the DMO said.
"The patient is now asymptomatic and is reported to be without any physical discomfort," Pul said.
The third sample of the COVID-19 patient, who is admitted to Tezu Zonal Hospital, along with second samples of his family members will be sent for tests on Tuesday and results are expected on Wednesday, she said.
The second sample of the COVID-19 patient had tested positive for coronavirus on April 7 but with lesser viral loads, the DMO said.
A total of 253 samples from across the state have been tested for coronavirus so far, of which results for 223 have returned negative and those of 29 are awaited, State Surveillance Officer (IDSP) Dr L Jampa said.
Meanwhile, the Health Department sought to assuage concerns of a shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PEE) kits for frontline personnel and said the state is fully prepared to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.
Joint Director of Health Services, Dr Emi Rumi said Hindustan Latex Limited (HLL), a public sector undertaking, has dispatched 2,102 PPE kits till Sunday, of which 2,082 have been sent to the hospitals in the districts.
Another consignment of 1,700 to 2,000 PPE kits is expected to reach the state by Tuesday, he said.
Director of Health Services (DHS) M Lego said people of the state have misconceptions regarding PPE kits.
"We don't have any authority to certify which are good or bad quality PPE kits.
But there are different kinds of PPE kits categorised according to the risk and need base," he said.
Appealing to healthcare professionals not to worry about any misinformation regarding the poor quality of PPE kits, Dr Jampa said, "The PPE kits provided by HLL can provide enough protection from coronavirus infection."