Delhi govt watching UK returnees from past 2 weeks

Delhi govt keeping watch on those who returned from UK in past 2 weeks: Officials

A health worker collects a swab sample from a shopper for Covid-19. Credit: AFP Photo

The authorities have enhanced monitoring of city residents who returned in the past few weeks from the UK, where a highly infectious coronavirus strain has emerged, to prevent any violation of the mandatory home isolation, Delhi government officials said on Wednesday.

Teams of health department and civil defence volunteers have been deployed at the district level to keep watch on the persons who returned from the UK in the last two weeks and tested negative but are required to undergo home isolation.

Delhi Health minister Satyendar Jain said tracing and testing of all those who travelled to Delhi from the UK in the past two weeks will be ensured.

“Delhi Government is aware, and all the people who have travelled from the UK to Delhi in the past two weeks will be traced, tested and advised quarantine," he said in a statement.

A district magistrate said the Bureau of Civil Aviation has shared details of those who have returned from the UK and teams are visiting them to check for any symptoms of the virus and report them for testing.

"We are making sure that all those who have returned from UK in past two weeks are being contacted and ensured RTPCR test if any symptoms are reported . Tracing of their contacts after return to Delhi is also underway," he said.

The government has set up a separate facility at the LNJP hospital for those passengers from the UK who are found COVID-19 positive in the RTPCR tests conducted at the IGI airport, for their treatment and genomic testing, officials said.

Besides, a five-star hotel in Aerocity near the airport has been earmarked as a paid quarantine facility, while a Covid care centre in south Delhi will serve as a free institutional isolation facility for passengers from flights in which positive cases are detected, they said.

Those passengers who have returned from the UK in the past few weeks and have been found negative will undergo two weeks' home isolation followed by another two week period under observation, officials said.

Jain said while the new strain is contagious, the only way to protect  from any infection is by wearing a mask and taking all proper precautions.

He requested people to be careful saying no matter the strain, the only way to protect oneself is by wearing the mask when stepping out.