Spike in Covid-19 cases with unknown source of infection worries Kerala Government

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Many see the rise in cases with unknown source of infection as an indication of starting of community spread in the state. However, the state government is ruling out the possibility of a community spread especially in these two districts, where the government had relaxed lockdown measures last week.

A spurt in the number of Covid-19 patients without any known source of infection is worrying the Kerala government, which had received laurels for its efforts to contain the pandemic.

The health authorities are puzzles over a half a dozen positive cases reported in the last one week in Kottayam and Idukki districts. With this the number of cases with unknown sources of infection in the state has risen to 25. 

Many see this as an indication of starting of community spread in the state. However, the state government is ruling out the possibility of a community spread especially in these two districts, where the government had relaxed lockdown measures last week.

“We are closely monitoring the situation and so far the indication of community spread has not been notified anywhere in the state. We can reach a conclusion after random sampling tests conducted in the hotspots and other parts,” a senior government official in Health Department was quoted by India Today as saying.

Health minister K K Shailaja has also ruled out community spread. She said the health department was trying to trace the sources of infection. “We have conducted random tests in all suspected areas and there is no trace of a community spread,’’ she added.

 In Kottayam, the sources of infection of a headload worker, a businessman in Vaikkom and a degree student from Panachikkad are yet to be traced. A truck driver, who had tested positive earlier with unknown source of infection, was later found to have had travelled to Maharashtra.

In Idukki, the source of infection of two patients — one from Munnar and another from Vandanmedu — is yet to be traced. The government has sealed the borders of these two districts and tightened measures against movement of people and vehicle to and from the districts.

Experts are of the view that random sampling has become imminent at least in those areas where more cases are being reported. Since April 21, Kerala reported more infections comparing to the recovery rate.

The state reported 11 new cases, including a government doctor in Idukki and two nurses in Kottayam on April 26. Among the newly infected, seven were infected locally. Twelve new cases were reported as of 8:00 AM on Apr 28, according to data released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

This brings the total reported cases of coronavirus in Kerala to 481. Among the total people infected as on date, 355 have recovered and 4 have passed away.

So far 468 people have tested positive in Kerala and four died due to Covid-19. The state has tested 22,954 samples so far while 21,997 have tested negative. The state has notified 87 locations as hotspots.

According to senior government officials, the infection has already entered third phase in the state and more surveillance is required to check the virus spread.

Image Credit: News18

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