Thiruvananthapuram

Antigen testing intensified in coastal areas of Thiruvananthapuram; food delivery agents to be subjected to COVID-19 tests

The spurt in COVID-19 cases along the coastal belt in Thiruvananthapuram has prompted the government to intensify rapid antigen detection tests in the region.

At least 15 people have been reported to have contracted the infection through contact within a few days in the coastal area. These included several people from Poonthura alone.

Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran, who has been spearheading the containment efforts in the district, pointed out that the critical situation called for further curbs on public movement. He added that steps were afoot to boost testing in Poonthura and nearby places on a war-footing. While over 200 swab samples were collected over the last two days, many more will be subjected to the test on the days to come.

He added that the 27-year old Poonthura-native medical representative is known to have come in close proximity with several doctors, especially in hospitals in Kazhakuttom and Nalanchira. His patient flow-chart has been prepared and will be circulated soon.

The diagnosis of the COVID-19 in a Zomato delivery executive on Saturday has also set the alarm bells ringing in the district. The administration has decided to subject all agents of online food aggregators in the city to antigen tests within the next two days. Besides, they will be required to refrain from their existing practice of crowding in various locations close to prominent restaurants.

“Considering the food delivery executives have become a lifeline for several families during the COVID-19 outbreak, it is pertinent they adhered to social distancing norms and other guidelines to ensure their and their customers’ safety,” Mr. Surendran said.

More places in the district were declared as containment zones on the day. Bringing the entire commercial area of Palayam under tight restrictions, the district administration included areas close to the Palayam market including the Ayyankali Hall and Jubilee Hospital to the existing containment zone. The Vellanad town and Kannampally wards in Vellanad grama panchayat were the other new containment zones in the district. (EOM)

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2020 11:16:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/antigen-testing-intensified-in-coastal-areas-of-thiruvananthapuram-food-delivery-agents-to-be-subjected-to-covid-19-tests/article31996424.ece

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