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COVID: Tamil Nadu government shifts up gear to tackle 'Omicron' challenge, sets up special wards

He said that for re-confirmation, the samples of these six people have been sent to the Bengaluru based Institute for Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine (inStem) and results are awaited.

Published: 06th December 2021 11:14 PM  |   Last Updated: 06th December 2021 11:37 PM   |  A+A-

A separate ward is readied to treat persons infected with the Omicron COVID variant at Government Omandurar Hospital in Chennai

A separate ward is readied to treat persons infected with the Omicron COVID variant at Government Omandurar Hospital in Chennai. (Photo| ANI)

By PTI

CHENNAI: More amenities, including special wards in public sector hospitals and enhanced surveillance and testing are among the several measures taken by authorities aimed at tackling the challenge of Omicron, not detected yet in the state, the Tamil Nadu government said on Monday.

Inspecting 50 beds set apart as a precautionary measure at the Omandurar Medical College Hospital, a state-run multi super specialty facility here, Health Minister Ma Subramanian said 15 beds were for intensive care and the remaining 35 for specialised treatment.

Similar facilities, ranging from 50 to 150 beds, have been readied in district headquarters hospitals and medical college hospitals across the state. Such hospitals have requisite amenities, including medical equipment and oxygen supply, he said, adding Tamil Nadu has the best labs for RT-PCR testing.

On enhanced surveillance and tracking measures, vis-a-vis air transport, the Minister said that out of the 5,858 people who arrived in Tamil Nadu, including 5,249 from 11 high risk countries in the past about a week, six were found infected with the Delta plus variant.

He said that for re-confirmation, the samples of these six people have been sent to the Bengaluru based Institute for Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine (inStem) and results are awaited. Of the six people, three are being treated at a state-run facility at Guindy here, two others in a private hospital and another person at the Government Medical College hospital in Kanyakumari District.

Another returnee, though he did not have any specific symptom has, however, been isolated at his house in Kumbakonam as a precautionary measure. The returnees who tested positive on arrival were from the United Kingdom, America and Singapore.

Those who travelled in the front and rear seats of air passengers who tested positive for COVID-19 and air hostesses of such flights have also been screened and those found to be infected have been isolated, the Minister said.

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There is no case of Omicron in Tamil Nadu, he asserted. Tamil Nadu has achieved a vaccination coverage of 80.44 per cent as regards the first dose and 47.46 in respect of the second, the Minister said. On December 11, the 14th mega vaccination camp would be held in 50,000 locations in the state, he said and appealed to the people to make use of it.

A government bulletin here said 10 people died of COVID-19 in Tamil Nadu and the death toll stood at 36,539. The active cases are 8,013 while 719 people tested positive for the virus. Till date, 27,31,235 people have been infected and 26,86,683 discharged following treatment.

On December 6, a total of 1,01,255 samples (RT-PCR) were tested and cumulatively 5,48,85,228 samples have been screened.



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