Kerala

Containment strategy goes awry: Chennithala

‘Contradictory orders on quarantine’

Leader of the Opposition Ramesh Chennithala on Monday said the government’s scheme to impose mandatory institutional quarantine on arrivals for seven days collapsed due to contradictory orders.

Persons returning to Kerala from within the country and outside were puzzled whether they should head home for self-imposed isolation or to places designated as institutional quarantine centres by the government.

Mr. Chennithala highlighted a video which purportedly showed government authorities dropping a set of Gulf returnees midway home from the airport.

“The arrivals had no clue how to proceed from there after sitting cooped up in a bus for nine hours,” he said.

The State’s containment strategy was in disarray. “It is like closing the windows to the pandemic and leaving the main door open,” Mr. Chennithala said.

The government had not increased testing for SARS-CoV-2 citing insufficient number of kits. Its claim that there was an adequate number of beds and ventilator-enabled ICUs was a hoax. He urged the government to notify a specific number of beds in private hospitals as COVID-19 wards.

Govt. clarification

The government clarified that it has categorised persons who have “undertaken international travel or interstate travel in the last 14 days” as “primary high-risk contact”.

Such persons who have a bath-attached private room to isolate themselves can opt for “14-day strict quarantine” at home or a hotel of their choice.

The authorities will observe members at home for COVID-19 symptoms for the 14 days after the quarantine period ended.

An official clarified that arrivals who did not have such facilities to isolate themselves at home could opt for institutional quarantine at one of the centres designated by the government.

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 8:16:44 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/containment-strategy-goes-awry-chennithala/article31782359.ece

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