Kochi

Over 16,000 samples collected for testing in Ernakulam

As part of a State-wide mass testing drive to contain the spread of COVID-19, Ernakulam collected 16,210 samples for testing on Friday, according to District Collector S. Suhas.

The district has surpassed the day’s target of 15,500 tests. The two-day drive, for which the district administration had set a target of 31,000 samples, will continue on Saturday.

Ernakulam recorded 1,391 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, and the active caseload has crossed 10,000, with 10,138 presently under treatment for the infection. Thrikkakara registered 56 new cases, followed by Keezhmad with 45, and Kalamassery, Vazhakulam, and Vengola with 36 cases each. Maradu saw 35 new cases, and Palluruthy recorded 34. Two health workers and three police officers were among those who were infected.

A total of 515 people tested negative on Friday, and 25,750 people remain in quarantine. While 7,402 people are recovering at home, the number those admitted at private hospitals has grown to 645. At treatment centres at government hospitals, 276 people are recovering, while 372 people are at first- and second-line treatment centres.

Mass testing camps were organised in different parts of the district on Friday, and seven mobile testing units were deployed to collect samples. People who were part of the electioneering process, those over the age of 45 who have not been vaccinated, people in containment zones and clusters, and contacts of patients were identified with the help of ASHA workers and asked to get tested.

Prior to the launch of the testing drive, the administration had conducted a meeting with representatives of political parties. People who were part of electioneering squads, polling agents, those who distributed voter slips, and others who might have come in contact with several people during the campaign have been identified for testing.

As part of the testing drive, select private laboratories have been roped in to scale up tests and offer testing for free.

Meanwhile, in the Kochi Corporation, Mayor M. Anilkumar convened a meeting of standing committee chairpersons and the Opposition Leader, to discuss measures to contain the spread of the infection.

The entry of visitors to the Kochi Corporation office will be restricted, and a help desk will begin functioning soon. The functioning of COVID monitoring committees at the division level will be intensified. Each monitoring committee comprises the division councillor, a health inspector, representatives of residents’ associations, and police officers. The committees were formed last year at the local body level to oversee disease containment measures.

The first-line treatment centre at Palluruthy which had been shut down would be reopened soon, said T.K. Ashraf, chairman of the health standing committee.

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Printable version | May 9, 2021 8:23:58 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/over-16000-samples-collected-for-testing-in-ernakulam/article34337357.ece

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