51 contract COVID-19 through local transmission in Ernakulam

A lorry carrying banana bunches entering a locked down area in Chellanam on Thursday morning.  

Fifty-one persons who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 in Ernakulam district on Thursday have been confirmed to have contracted the virus through local transmission. A communication from the district administration said here that 25 persons tested positive from the Chellanam cluster and 15 tested positive from the Aluva cluster. A 16-year-old contracted the disease in the Keezhmad cluster.

A 22-year-old native of Thoppumpady tested positive on Thursday. She is a close relative of a person who had tested positive earlier. He was working in an establishment on T.D. Road in the city.

A 26-year-old doctor working in a private hospital in the city has been confirmed to have come into contact with a COVID-19 patient.

The others who contracted the virus through local transmission included a person each from Kalady, Nayarambalam, Nedumbassery, Vengola, Thrikkakara, Edathala, and Thripunithura. A native of Aluva who tested positive had come into contact with a COVID-19 patient from Thirurangadi in Malappuram district.

A 39-year-old woman, who contracted the disease, worked in a food processing plant at Ezhupunna in Alappuzha district.

The district reported 57 new cases on Thursday. These included six persons who arrived from Dubai, New Delhi, Saudi Arabia and Maharashtra.

Meanwhile, seven persons were discharged from hospitals after they tested negative. This included a seven-year-old from Parakkadavu and a 12-year-old from Eloor. The others are from Chellanam, Ayyamppilly, Chennamangalam, Eloor and Malayattoor.

A total of 1,037 persons were put under observation in the district on Thursday while 700 were removed from the list. The total number of persons under observation is 14,788. Of this, 12,880 are in their homes while 406 are in COVID care centres and 1,502 are using paid facilities.

Seventy-eight persons have been hospitalised for observation. Of this, 48 are in Kalamassery Medical College and 30 are in private hospitals.

A total of 528 persons are undergoing treatment for the disease in the district now.

Containment zones

Ward 12 of Thrikkakara Municipality, ward 21 of Alangad panchayat and a micro zone comprising Grandeur Westend Palace and Poornathrayeesa Temple Road in ward 50 of Kochi Corporation have been classified as containment zones.

Meanwhile, ward 14 of Thripunithura has been removed from the list of containment zones.

Three critical

A 59-year-old COVID-19 patient from Edathala, near Aluva, was in a critical condition, said a communication from the Government Medical College here. The patient is on ventilator. A 53-year-old from Muttam, near Aluva, too is in a critical condition and is in the intensive care unit. Another person from NAD, Aluva, who is 67-years-old, is also in a serious condition and is on ventilator.

Residents’ demand

A meeting convened by the Thripunithura municipal authorities with M. Swaraj, MLA, and officials from various departments decided to restrict the functioning of all business establishments and shops in the municipality from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Parcel counters can function till 9 p.m.

Meanwhile, a section of people from the Vellangil Thoppu side of ward 35 and the CPI(M) Thripunithura West local committee have urged the District Collector to confine restrictions to just the area where COVID-19 cases were reported. “It’s a huge ward and micro containment should be enough,” they said.

COVID tests

District collector S. Suhas said that an average of 1,200 tests were being carried out in the district in the public sector. He said during a videoconference with the Chief Minister on Thursday that the number of tests had been increased in view of the spread of COVID-19 in the district. He also said that health workers were in touch with all the people under observation in Chellanam. Mental health workers too were available in the area, he said. There was a tele-medicine team working for Chellanam. Free ration distribution was also going on in the area, he added.

Drone surveillance

The Ernakulam Rural police are deploying drones over the 88 containment zones to check whether people are venturing out in violation of restrictions or crowding in public. A total of 200 police personnel and volunteers have been deployed in these areas. Police patrol had also been intensified, Rural police chief K. Karthik said.

MP’s plea

Ernakulam MP Hibi Eden has warned that the COVID-19 spread in Chellanam is serious and if sufficient measures are not taken, it could turn out to be the worst COVID-19 scenario in the State.

In his letter to Fisheries Minister J. Mercykutty Amma and the Minister in charge of Ernakulam district, V.S. Sunil Kumar, the MP said that all people in wards 15, 16 and 17 in Chellanam should be tested for COVID-19.

A full-time facility should be established for collecting samples.

The number of tests should be increased from 40 to 60 and sufficient COVID first-line treatment centres should be opened, he said.

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Printable version | May 13, 2021 10:18:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/50-contract-covid-19-through-local-transmission-in-ernakulam/article32105272.ece

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