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Early identification, isolation key to containing Covid-19 cases in Haryana

Till Wednesday, 190 positive cases including two deaths were reported, while 43 patients recovered and were discharged in the state
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By Rajesh Moudgil, Chandigarh
PUBLISHED ON APR 16, 2020 12:04 AM IST

It is the early identification and isolation of suspected Covid-19 persons as well as increased sampling that seems to be working for Haryana.

Till Wednesday, 190 positive cases including two deaths were reported, while 43 patients recovered and were discharged in the state.

This figure is besides the positive cases of 14 Italian tourists brought by the central government to a private hospital in Gurugram, 13 of whom had been cured and discharged, while one of them died of the disease.

The challenge, but, has been humongous. It was on March 16 when Haryana’s first Covid-19 positive case was reported from Gurugram. In the next fortnight, this number climbed to 29 and all of them had a travel history to Covid-19 affected countries. On March 31 when the state government launched a massive exercise to identify persons with Tablighi Jamaat links and have quarantined about 1,600 of them in their respective areas, mainly in Nuh, Palwal, Gurugram and Faridabad. By April 13, the number of positive cases in the state was 182.

From a few hundreds of persons under surveillance in the first few weeks in March, the government agencies now have over 15,000 under surveillance.

Impetus on testing

The pointed approach to give a boost to the sampling of the suspected persons also increased rapidly. While only 817 samples had been taken before April 1, more than 3,600 samples have been taken since. While containment zones plan has already been put in place in Nuh, Palwal, Sonepat, Karnal, Faridabad, Bhiwani, Charkhi Dadri, Gurugram, Jind, Fatehabad, Panipat, Kaithal, Jhajjar, Panchkula and Sirsa, 11 full or partial Covid-19 hospitals or medical colleges have also been set up. The state has also declared Nuh, Faridabad, Gurugram and Palwal as red zones.

In what was seen as a respite for Haryana, the number of positive cases has since recently shown a downward trend. The state had seen a spate of cases in recent days, especially last Sunday when as many as 16 new cases were reported in a day, 24 cases on April 8, 33 on April 7 and 20 on April 6. Most of these infected persons were linked to Tablighi Jamaat. They had either attended the event at Delhi’s Nizamuddin last month or were in contact with the attendees. Monday’s case was reported from Sirsa wherein a 33-year-old woman, who worked as a cook at a Rori village mosque.

Tablighi link

Of all the 1,648 Tablighis, including 107 foreign nationals, who have so far been traced and whose samples have been tested, 121 have been found to be positive, while the result of 200 is awaited and remaining have been found to be negative. About 20 of Tablighi workers have, however, also been booked under Section 307 (attempt to murder) of the IPC for allegedly hiding travel history from local administration till April 8, the deadline given by the state government.

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