The Panchkula health department which has been aggressively testing to ascertain any community spread has now decided to randomly test shopkeepers of urban Panchkula and is currently devising a strategy in this regard.
The health department which had completed testing its rural population for community spread and had found zero positive cases has now moved on to conduct similar tests in its urban population. As many as 40 samples have already been collected and have tested negative. The health department is collaborating with the IMA to conduct these tests wherein patients coming at private clinics and OPDs are being tested for the virus at random.
The process has taken a slight halt with a number of foreign as well as domestic returnees coming to Panchkula. “We had started random sampling of our urban population this week but had to put it on hold with people from red zones reaching our city in high numbers. As for now, testing them is our priority,” says the Deputy Civil Surgeon, Dr Saroj Aggarwal.
High contact job with a high population of people has been a main reason for Panchkula authorities to reach this decision.
Meanwhile, as many as 148 people who have reached the city on domestic flights have been kept in home quarantine and all those coming from red zones are being tested. “We have already tested a lot of these and have called others to our flu corner tomorrow. We have even had one person refuse to come in but we will take his sample from his house itself. All coming from red zones are to be tested,” said Dr Saroj.
More than 40 foreign returnees from various international flights have also been quarantined, other than the 73 US returnees. “We are organising batches of tests as the number is very high. Of these more than 40, some have completed their seven-day institutional quarantine and have reached their homes while some are still there. We will be testing all of them,” Dr Saroj said.
Among the 73 foreign returnees that had been brought into the city past week, while as many as 21 had tested positive then, one more — a 28-year-old man, resident of Kaithal — tested positive late Thursday. The man has been isolated and is receiving treatment at civil hospital, Panchkula.
A female foreign returnee from the US tested positive in Faridabad. The woman has been isolated at Faridabad itself.
A couple, who had recently returned from Ahmedabad also tested positive on Friday. Both are residents of Kalka and have been shifted to the isolation department of Civil Hospital along with their immediate families. Their contract tracing has also begun. The district now has a total of 28 cases, including three active cases.
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