A Covid-19 ward set up at the city’s Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases on Tuesday | Vinod Kumar T
A Covid-19 ward set up at the city’s Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases on Tuesday | Vinod Kumar T

Karnataka issues advisory as Covid-19 cases rise in Kerala

Those having respiratory problems, symptoms of fever, cough, cold and running nose should seek immediate medical help.

BENGALURU: The health department on Tuesday issued a Covid advisory with the number of cases increasing in neighbouring Kerala. According to the advisory, those aged 60 and above, and pregnant and lactating mothers should wear masks while venturing out. They should avoid visiting closed, poorly ventilated spaces and crowded areas. 

Those having respiratory problems, symptoms of fever, cough, cold and running nose should seek immediate medical help. The advisory was issued based on the Covid-19 Technical Advisory Committee’s (TAC) recommendations. According to the advisory, people should maintain hygiene, including frequent washing of hands. Those unwell should stay at home and avoid meeting others, especially the elderly. People travelling overseas should be vigilant and follow precautions such as wearing masks at airports.

Health Commissioner Randeep issued a circular to health officials stating that as per Central guidelines, there is no need to ramp up cross-border surveillance by imposing restrictions at Kerala and Tamil Nadu borders. However, he asked the officials to be vigilant and ensure adequate testing and timely reporting of Covid cases.

A Covid-19 ward set up at the city’s Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases on Tuesday | Vinod Kumar T
A Covid-19 ward set up at the city’s Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases on Tuesday | Vinod Kumar T

 79 active cases in Karnataka

 “Testing of all SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Infections) cases and at least one in 20 ILI (Influenza Like Illness) cases for Covid-19 at all private and government tertiary centres, including medical colleges, should be taken up,” Health Commissioner Randeep stated.

District surveillance officers should coordinate and send positive samples with Ct (cycle threshold) value less than 25 to Bangalore Medical College and Research Centre (BMCRI). All government and private hospitals should conduct mock drills to ensure operational readiness, the circular stated. Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao, who held a meeting with top health officials, said that daily testing will be ramped up to 5,000 by this weekend. Union Health Minister Mansuk Mandaviya will hold a meeting of health ministers of all States on Wednesday.

A TAC member said, “We have submitted recommendations. There is no need to panic or impose any rigid restrictions as of now. We are closely monitoring how Covid 19 variant, JN.1, is behaving. While it is spreading in neighbouring Kerala and other countries, it is not yet listed as the variant of concern.” He said there are over 70 active Covid cases in the State and based on the situation, the government will be asked to take measures.

RULES FOR NY CELEBRATIONS NEXT WEEK 
Guidelines for New Year celebrations by the Bengaluru city police will be released next week, City Police Commissioner B Dayananda has said. Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, he said that meetings with the other departments concerned in this regard have taken place. A final meeting will be held with the police officers attached to Bengaluru Police Commissi-onerate before releasing the guidelines, he added. The previ-ous years New Year celebrations will be analysed to ensure more precautions and security this year. New Year celebra-tions at Brigade Road and MG Road will be as usual.  “All measures will be in place to ensure safety to the public and to those participating in the celebrations,” he added.  

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