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‘Spike in Kannur due to extensive testing’

The sudden increase in the number of Covid cases in Kannur in the last two days is due to a decision to test all those who had returned from abroad, the Health Department has said.

Published: 22nd April 2020 06:44 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd April 2020 06:44 AM   |  A+A-

A social media grab of the archaic form of punishment being meted out for violating the lockdown at Azheekkal in Kannur on Saturday

Express News Service

KANNUR: The sudden increase in the number of Covid cases in Kannur in the last two days is due to a decision to test all those who had returned from abroad, the Health Department has said. Those who are in home quarantine but asymptomatic are also being tested. The authorities ruled out that community transmission has occurred in the district so far.

A sense of anxiety and insecurity is palpable among the public in Kannur, which reported 16 of the 25 cases reported in the last two days. Ten people contracted the virus on Tuesday alone and nine of them had returned from foreign countries.

District Medical Officer Dr K Narayana Naik said the number is likely to be on the higher side even on Wednesday as the administration has been sending more swab samples of those in home quarantine for testing, even if they are asymptomatic. 

Curve of +ve cases could be flattened soon: Kannur DMO

“Since some asymptomatic people tested positive, we can’t leave anything to chance. That’s why we insist everyone who had come from foreign countries to be on home quarantine and undergo swab sample testing,” said Dr Naik. “The number of fresh cases will come down in two-three days as we’ll complete the swab sample testing of all persons who had returned from abroad,” he said.Dr Naik said things were under control and the curve of positive cases could be flattened soon.

“There’s nothing to panic. Now 90 per cent of the infected are Gulf returnees. The rest are primary contacts. The issue of community spread hasn’t occurred in the district so far,” he said.He warned that things might go out of control unless people stay indoors. “So many people took to the streets on Tuesday as if they were about to celebrate something. It’s foolishness. The lockdown is still in force,” said Dr Naik.

“It’s very important to follow the quarantine guidelines strictly. The Cheruvancheri incident is a case in point. Ten persons from a 17-member family tested positive and are undergoing treatment at the Covid care centre in Anjarakandi,” said the DMO. “We’re a literate society and we should act accordingly.”“Some tested positive even after the completion of the quarantine period. This gives a bit of a headache to the department. But we ensure that everybody under the scanner will be tested,” he said.

‘Situation not alarming’
District Collector T V Subhash said the situation in Kannur is not alarming and there is no need to panic. “But things would go out of hand unless we strictly follow social distancing by locking ourselves inside our houses,” he said.

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