First Coronavirus patient in Kerala stable, shifted to Thrissur medical college
The condition of India’s first Coronavirus-affected woman in Kerala’s Thrissur is stable and she is responding well to treatment, state health minister K K Shailaja said on Friday even as the government sounded a high alert across the state.
Health authorities later shifted the medical student, who had returned from China’s Wuhan last week, to an isolation ward of the Thrissur Medical College Hospital for better observation and care, health officials said. The minister had rushed to Thrissur on Thursday night after the union health ministry confirmed the first positive case in the country.
The minister said the medical college has been upgraded with a special isolation ward that can treat at least 24 patients at a time and doctors and paramedical staff deployed there were specially trained. Earlier the patient was admitted in the government general hospital.
The minister said 1056 people are under observation in the state and 20 are in isolation wards. Many people who came in direct contact with the first patient have been put under observation that is why the number of those under observation rose steadily.
“The condition of the student is stable. She is responding well to symptomatic treatment. We have constituted a medical board and a bulletin will be issued every evening,” she said. She requested people not to panic but cooperate with health officials and listen to their directives carefully. She has also sought the help of private hospitals and doctors to tide over the crisis. Many private hospitals in the state have opened isolation wards as a precaution.
The virus, which has killed 213 people — all in China, is said to have originated from a seafood market in Wuhan. The World Health Organisation has declared an international public health emergency in view of the prevailing condition. At least 20 countries have reported the infection so far.
Back home, some reports suggest the affected student was first screened and found negative and allowed to go home but she was later rushed to the hospital after she complained of breathlessness and throat pain. Three more results are awaited from the National Virology Institute in Pune. Among three, two of them had reportedly travelled with the first patient when she returned home last week.
The state health ministry has asked suspected patients to go by the protocol of the World Health Organization (WHO) and not to take homoeopathy or unani medicine now. Earlier, there were reports that these two alternate medicines were effective in treating the dreaded virus.
The Coronavirus is a large family of viruses that causes illnesses ranging from common cold to acute respiratory syndromes, but the virus that has killed people in China is a new strain, said health experts.