BHUBANESWAR/CUTTACK: Amid the growing concern over the new SARS-CoV2 strain, detection of one more Covid-19 positive case among the UK returnees and migration of some of the suspects to other states has put the Health administration on its toes.
The returnee, a four-year-old girl from Bhubaneswar, had come along with her parents to the city on December 20. Though her parents have tested negative at a private laboratory, their samples have been sent to Regional Medical Research Centre for further confirmation.
BMC sources said the girl has been admitted to a dedicated Covid hospital for treatment and her swab sample sent to National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune for genome sequencing. Her parents have been put in institutional quarantine for 14 days.
She was the second UK returnee in the State who was found to be positive for coronavirus after the Government sounded an alert over the newly mutated highly infectious strain. Five returnees have been traced in the city.
The State Government has started tracing the Britain returnees, who will be subjected to Covid test. So far 63 samples have been collected from the returnees and their family members. While two have tested positive, 12 samples from Cuttack and two from Bhubaneswar were found negative.
Contact could not be established with a number of returnees as their phone numbers are not reachable. Sources said, several returnees have migrated to cities outside Odisha for vacations after landing here and one from Cuttack did not cooperate for test.
Health officials said contact tracing of migrated returnees would be difficult as they had already left Odisha before the SOP was issued by the Union Health Ministry. “Efforts are on to locate the rest. District Collectors have been asked to send the rapid response teams to their native places,” said a senior health official.
The swab samples will be tested at the district level and sent to NIV for genome sequencing once tested positive for Covid-19. People have been advised not to panic and strictly follow the Covid safety norms to prevent spread of the virus.
Of the four persons identified to have returned to Cuttack in last two weeks, three belonged to the city and one is a native of Salepur block. Three among them have tested negative while one hailing from Khannagar did not cooperate to undergo Covid test.
In Ganjam, one of three returnees has been traced and found to be negative after RT-PCR test conducted twice. Collector Vijay Amruta Kulange said tracing of two others is underway.
Similarly, Koraput administration has traced three returnees - one each from Semiliguda, Sunabeda and Koraput. Chief district medical officer Dr Makarananda Behura said their samples have been sent for test and the result is awaited.