THE Tamil Nadu government Thursday handed over to districts a list of about 54,000 people to be traced and put in quarantine. These are among the 80,000 Indian passport holders from the state who entered the country after March 1.
The list has been provided to the state by the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS). Of these 80,000 people, about 16,000 are already quarantined at homes or hospitals and the rest are right now not in Tamil Nadu.
With two fresh cases, the number of COVID-19 cases in Tamil Nadu stands at 29 now. Those who tested positive on Thursday include a 24-year-old man who returned from London and a 65-year-old woman who came in contact with him.
On Thursday, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami had a video conference with all district collectors, SPs and city police commissioners. Greater Chennai Corporation tested drones for spraying disinfectants at the corporation’s headquarters, Ripon Buildings. According to Corporation commissioner G Prakash, they will be using drones similarly to spray disinfectant in markets and crowded localities, including slums.
Health secretary Beela Rajesh said they would expand this technique to other districts too. She said the government has identified some medical and engineering colleges that had closed down to accommodate COVID-19 patients. “We will be setting up at least 3,000 beds in these facilities. They will be ready within days,” she said.
Rajesh said a major challenge may be catering to patients such as senior citizens or pregnant women if there is a massive surge in COVID-19 cases. “In the last few days, we have identified about 1.5 lakh pregnant women across the state, including over 10,000 in the high-risk category. An officer will follow up the medical condition of at least 20 women in the locality daily over the phone. Whenever they need anything, the nearby Public Health Centre or advanced facilities in the districts will be ready,” she said.
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