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Three new COVID-19 positive cases in Tamil Nadu; total jumps to nine in state

A 43-year-old man who arrived from Dubai tested positive and is undergoing treatment at Government Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital.

Published: 23rd March 2020 03:18 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd March 2020 03:18 AM   |  A+A-

Chennai airport Seen deserted as many flights been cancelled ahead of Janata Curfew Day. (Photo | Ashwin Prasath)

By Express News Service

COIMBATORE/TENKASI/NAGERCOIL: Three persons tested positive for the coronavirus infection on Sunday, taking the total number of cases in Tamil Nadu to nine. Health Minister C Vijaya Baskar, in a tweet, said a 64-year-old woman who arrived from California tested positive and is undergoing treatment at Government Stanley Hospital in Chennai.

A 43-year-old man who arrived from Dubai tested positive and is undergoing treatment at Government Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital.  Earlier, a  25-year-old woman at ESIC Hospital in Coimbatore, who had recently come back from Spain, also tested positive on Sunday. All three are stable. Health officials said the 25-year-old, a native of Coimbatore, is pursuing her masters degree in Spain. She had come to New Delhi on March 16, took a flight to Bengaluru and from there boarded the Cannanore Express and arrived at Coimbatore on March 17.

On arrival, she went to Coimbatore Medical College and Hospital with her father, but was told to quarantine herself at home and come back if she developed symptoms. On March 19, she went to hospital again with her sister as she had fever and was admitted to the isolation ward, where samples were taken. Later, she was shifted to ESIC hospital. 

‘Coimbatore woman stable, family members in home quarantine’ 

Her condition is stable and her family members have been told to quarantine themselves at home for 14 days. CMCH Dean B Asokan said her family members, the cab driver who drove her home from the railway station, doctors, nurses and medical staff who were in close contact with her will be tested soon. Official sources said the department will try to contact her co-passengers on flight and train.

Meanwhile, the minister reiterated the 49-year-old Thailand national who died at CMCH days ago tested negative for COVID-19. He died of other causes. However, two persons who travelled with him tested positive on Saturday are being treated at IRT Perundurai Medical College in Erode. The duo, were among six, who had arrived in the district on March 11 and stayed in two mosques. After the duo tested positive, the mosques and houses they visited were disinfected and their associates were quarantined. Three persons who came in close contact with them are also under observation. 

No visible symptoms

Meanwhile, sources at Tirunelveli Medical College said the 43-year-old man who returned from Dubai did not show any visible symptoms of COVID-19 and was admitted only due to his travel history. “On Sunday, his blood sample tested positive. However, he is stable now,” sources said. As regards his travel history and people in contact, Deputy Director of Health Varadharajan said, “He arrived at the Madurai airport on March 17 from the Gulf and reached Radhapuram in the car of a co-passenger. He stayed at his friend’s house. As he was aware of the spread of the virus, he had been wearing a mask since he landed.” On Saturday, he arrived at the hospital with his friend. “As he has now tested positive, we have kept him in the isolation ward. At present, his co-passengers and friend are under isolation and will be monitored. Further investigation on his background being conducted now,” sources said. 

Sent back to Kerala

A Kadayanallur-based woman and her two children, who landed at the Thiruvananthapuram airport from Dubai on Saturday night with symptoms of cornavirus infection, were not quarantined in Kerala but sent to Tamil Nadu in an ambulance. However, the Tamil Nadu police and revenue officials stopped the vehicle at Puliyarai check-post on Sunday and sent them back to Kerala. An official said, “They should have been quarantined in Kerala for 14 days. Sending them to Tamil Nadu is against the guidelines issued by the Centre.” However, Thiruvananthapuram District Medical Office said that they are unaware of sending the three people to Tamil Nadu.

They had sent only two men belonging to Tenkasi as their samples tested negative. A media bulletin from the Health Department released earlier on Sunday said all the patients who are tested positive for COVID 19 in Tamil Nadu are “stable and under treatment”. One of the patients was discharged and under home quarantine. The bulletin said a total of 9,424 passengers who arrived in Tamil Nadu from abroad are under home quarantine for 28 days. As many as 198 asymptomatic passengers from countries that have been severely affected by coronavirus have been quarantined in facilities near the airport.

City tops list 
Of the passengers under home quarantine, a total of 2,921 are from Chennai. The second highest number is in Thanjavur district (592). So far, 443 samples from passengers have been sent for testing. 
 

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