Over 1.5k tested for coronavirus so far: Harsh Vardhan

Over 1,500 tested for coronavirus in India so far: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan in Lok Sabha

1.97 lakh passengers from 1,818 flights were screened at 21 international airports, informed Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. Credit: PTI Photo

The Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Monday informed the Lok Sabha that more than 1500 samples had been tested for the novel coronavirus in India, out of which only three were found positive.

“In our country, three positive cases have been reported so far from Kerala. All these cases have travel history from Wuhan, China. They have been isolated and are reported to be clinically stable,” Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said.

Giving a detailed account of the actions taken by the Centre to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus infection within the country, he said 1.97 lakh passengers from 1,818 flights were screened at 21 international airports.

Screening of passengers was initiated on January 18. Initially, airports at Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Kochi were covered but the net was subsequently expanded to cover 21 airports.

To ensure availability of personal protective equipment and N95 masks, export of such items was banned by the Director General of Foreign Trade. A buffer stock is maintained by states as well as the Union government.

In view of a confirmed case in Nepal, screening exercises are being conducted in all integrated border check posts at Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Sikkim and Bihar.

Regular surveillance has been initiated across the country for all cases having travel history from China and for people having contact with such persons and having fever, cough or breathlessness. Through the integrated disease surveillance network, the government is also following up on 9,452 such passengers.

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