India’s second case of coronavirus reported in Kerala

New Delhi: India’s second case of coronavirus has been reported in Kerala, Union Health Ministry said on Sunday morning, three days after the southern state reported country’s first case of the infectious disease that has killed over 300 people in China. The coronavirus outbreak, which originated in China and spread to more than 20 countries across the world in the last few weeks, has been declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organisation.
“Second positive case of Novel Coronavirus patient, has been reported in Kerala. The patient has a travel history from China. The patient is stable and is being closely monitored,” central government said in a statement. The patient is said to have returned from China on January 24.
On Thursday, Kerala reported India’s first case of coronavirus – a medical student studying in China’s Wuhan city, the epicenter of the outbreak. She was quarantined at a hospital in Thrissur after she “self-reported” throat infection, government said.
Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja on Sunday morning said they are yet to get a confirmation on the second case. “We have been informed on a phone call by National Institute of Virology in Pune that there is a possibility of another positive case in Alappuzha. We are yet to receive the results. Right now, all tests are being allowed only at NIV Pune. That causes delay in us getting results,” she said, urging people travelling from China to report to the health department.
Over 1,700 people are under surveillance at their homes in Kerala for possible exposure to the virus. Seventy people are being monitored in isolation wards across the state.
“We are well prepared with multi-level surveillance, support systems on the ground. A 28-day home quarantine is crucial,” KK Shailaja had said earlier this week.
The Union Health Ministry had also asked people who have a travel history to China since January 1 to report at the nearest health facility if they experienced any symptoms such as fever, cough or breathing trouble. Over 52,000 passengers from 326 flights have been screened for novel coronavirus at various airports across the country till Saturday, according to the government. Ninety-seven symptomatic travellers have been referred to isolation facilities, officials said.
Possible cases are also being monitored in isolation wards of hospitals in various cities including Delhi and Mumbai
Earlier on Sunday morning, a second batch of 324 Indians, locked down in Wuhan, were evacuated from the city by an Air India plane. They landed in Delhi at around 9:40 am today. The first Air India flight, a specially-prepped Boeing 747, brought back 324 Indians stranded in the city on Saturday.