Coronavirus claims India's first victim in Karnataka

Coronavirus: India registers first COVID-19 death; Kalaburagi man was infected, confirms Karnataka

Karnataka on Thursday reported the country’s first COVID-19 death. A day after the death of the 76-year-old patient from Kalaburagi, who had returned from Saudi Arabia on 29th February, his samples were tested positive for the dreaded coronavirus. The Health and Family Welfare Department of Karnataka on Thursday late night confirmed that the senior citizen died of COVID-19.

The samples including the blood samples and throat swab of the 76-year-old that were collected on Monday afternoon was sent to the Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute’s Virus Research and Diagnostic Laboratory in Bengaluru. The results of the test revealed on Thursday late evening confirmed that the patient was infected with the coronavirus.

The statement by the health department said, “The 76-year-old man from Kalaburagi who passed away and was a suspected COVID-19 patient has been confirmed for COVID-19. The necessary contact tracing, isolation and other measures as per protocol are being carried out. Telangana Govt. has also been informed since he went to a private hospital there. "

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He was buried on Wednesday in the presence of a doctor as per protocol. 

The deceased had gone on a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia on January 29 and returned to Kalaburagi on February 29. 

He took treatment as an outpatient from March for cough, cold and fever. As his condition worsened, he was admitted to a private hospital on March 9. The family members shifted him to a hospital in Hyderabad on March 9 night on medical advice. As the doctors there told the chances of his survival is bleak due to his advanced age, he was taken back to Kalaburagi in an ambulance but the aged man breathed on the way back.

Three family members accompanied the deceased.

B Sriramulu, Minister for Health and Family Welfare also tweeted confirming the death.

 "The 76-year-old man from Kalburgi who passed away and was a suspected-COVID19 patient has been Confirmed for COVID-19. The necessary contact tracing,  isolation and other measures as per protocol are being carried out," said Sriramulu.

Dedicated hospital

Amid the outbreak, the Karnataka government is considering dedicating one of the existing hospitals in Bengaluru to treat Covid-19 cases, even as the state recorded its fifth coronavirus case after a Bengaluru techie tested positive.

Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar on Thursday said a final decision on the hospital will be taken in a day or two. Dr Sudhakar said, “I have had a discussion with department officials today. We will come out with full details in a day or two.” 

“The hospital may have 300 to 400 beds,” the minister added.

Currently, Covid-19 patients are being treated at an isolation ward in Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases (RGICD). As of now, isolation ward facilities have also been created in six major hospitals across Bengaluru: Jayanagar General Hospital, Epidemic Diseases Hospital, CV Raman Hospital, Yelahanka Hospital, Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases and Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health.

Coverage under Ayushman Bharat

Henceforth, twenty procedures will be covered under Ayushman Bharat-Arogya Karnataka to cover hospital expenses of Covid-19 patients. So far, no patient has received treatment for Covid-19 in a private hospital.

So far, 18 suspected coronavirus cases and positive patients have been admitted in hospitals across the state: RGICD (10), other Bengaluru hospitals (2), Hassan (2), Dakshina Kannada (3), and Ballari (1).