Agra registers its biggest 24-hr spike with 35 new cases
Officials said the 35 new cases include eight that are linked to the congregation at the headquarters of Tablighi Jamaat in Delhi that last month emerged as a Covid-19 hotspot.Updated: Apr 14, 2020, 06:45 IST
Agra recorded the biggest spike in Covid-19 cases in a day on Monday as 35 people tested positive for the disease and took the district’s tally to 138 even as officials attributed the sharp rise to aggressive testing and contact tracing as part of a containment model that the Centre has asked states to emulate.
The Centre on Saturday cited the model while instructing states to learn from it. Officials say the Agra Model has involved a proactive approach in identifying cases, conducting intensive testing, door-to-door surveys and implementing strict quarantine measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19
Officials said the 35 new cases include eight that are linked to the congregation at the headquarters of Tablighi Jamaat in Delhi that last month emerged as a Covid-19 hotspot. They added of the total 138, 60 are liked to the congregation.
“We are witnessing a sharp rise in the number of patients but soon it will start decreasing. The institutional quarantine is the only solution to such types of cases,” said district magistrate Prabhu N Singh.
He added they have been shifting those who come in contact with Covid positive cases to quarantine centres before collecting their samples. Singh said they will continue with their model based on massive sampling, social distancing and institutional quarantine.
Officials said the virus has spread to a rural area of Fatehpur Sikri where a person infected 14 members of his family. They added these cases tested positive in a day. The other hotspots include a hospital in Agra where the staff and their contacts alone account for 20 Covid-19 patients.
Chief medical officer Dr Mukesh Kumar Vats said some patients were undergoing treatment at the hospital and no new admissions of patients will be allowed there.
The other coronavirus hotspot is Ghatia Azam Khan area, where a private practitioner first tested positive and is later believed to have infected at least five people.
“One should not go by numbers at present because it is the outcome of our surveillance and proactive sampling with 2,264 samples having been tested in Agra till date. The cases coming positive are those whose origins are known to us and is part of Agra containment plan,” said Vats.
“Till date, only one death has taken place that too of an aged lady who already had asthma. Other patients testing positive are kept under isolation and are getting cured.” He added they are handling the challenge posed by major hotspots including the hospital. “We are aggressively getting their contacts tested.”
Vats said the hotspot in Fatehpur Sikri has been sealed. “The in charge of a community health centre has been made the nodal officer for measures to be taken there for containment.”
Dr Satish Verma, the chief medical superintendent of Agra’s district hospital, said this month samples of 150 suspected Covid-19 patients have been tested daily on an average.
The Agra Model kicked in early in the Covid-19 outbreak cycle when six patients tested positive on March 3. At the time, the entire country had only 30-odd cases. Authorities drew up a list of people with foreign travel and identified their families and close contacts. The neighbourhood where patients lived were declared hotspots, with a three-km radius around them acting like containment zones and a five-km radius areas as the buffer zones.