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New potential COVID-19 hotspot emerges in Lucknow, 1400 lives at risk

As the test report of a critically ill elderly patient came positive for coronavirus on Monday, the authorites isolated more than 1400 people and sealed the locality in the old city areas.

Published: 14th April 2020 08:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th April 2020 08:00 PM   |  A+A-

Medical staff wear protective gear as they arrive at a hospital where COVID-19 positive patients are being treated in Prayagraj

For representational purposes

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: The authorities in Lucknow went into a tizzy on Tueday after a new potential COVID-19 hotspot emerged in the state capital. As the test report of a critically ill elderly patient came positive for coronavirus on Monday, the authorites isolated more than 1400 people and sealed the locality in the old city areas.

The infected man, 64, is currently convalescing at Trauma Centre of King George’s Medical University (KGMU). He was hospitalised after developing acute respiratory syndrome and is in a critical condition.

However, soon after the test report of the man landed, the authorities rushed to seal the locality – Nazirabad - which he belongs to. It has a population of over 1000. As many as 65 Trauma Centre health personnel including 13 junior doctors were also quarantined for two weeks as they all had come into contact with the person during his treatment.

Besides, two private medical facilities in the locality - a private hospital and a private diagnostic centre - were also shut and their 50-odd employees were asked to quarantine themselves at homes for 14 days. The old man had visited these two places before getting admitted to the KGMU trauma centre.

As per KGMU Chief Medical Superintendent, Prof SN Shankhwar, the patient was admitted to the emergency ward of the Trauma Centre on Saturday evening. Dr Shankhwar said that the patient was first referred to medicine department by a junior doctor. Subsequently, another junior doctor sent him to isolation ward after seeing COVID-like symptoms in him. “His swab sample was then sent for testing, the report of which was released on Monday,” he said.

While the three junior doctors, who had examined the patient, were quarantined in a city hotel, 10 other doctors who came in contact with the patient isolated themselves by staying in student hostels and guest houses. Other quarantined staff included 40 health nurses and paramedics, 10 sanitary workers and two security guards.

About 300 family members of these health personnel have also been asked to remain in home isolation till further orders. Besides, the patient’s six family members were quarantined in a private hospital.

According to Lucknow Chief Medical Officer Dr Narendra Agarwal, till the report of the medical team arrives, their families would remain home-quarantined. He
claimed that a survey to map further contacts of the doctors and medical staff was already on. The intent is to identify people who might have come in contact with the man in the past 10 days.

Meanwhile, the locality where the old man lived was also sealed in accordance with the containment policy to isolate an area.

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