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Coronavirus outbreak continues as Indian cases rise

Abstract lab tube with tag coronavirus in secret laboratory with red led-light. Novel coronavirus 2019-nCoV on blue background. Novel coronavirus outbreak concept.The novel coronavirus outbreak continues to affect India, as cases in the country rise. 

At the time of writing, there are forty active cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in India. The other three cases are of individuals who have since recovered. All three were students who had returned to India from the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the coronavirus outbreak originated. 3,003 samples have been sent for testing for the novel coronavirus, of which 2,694 have yielded negative results and the remainder are pending. 

There are presently no confirmed deaths due to COVID-19 in India. However, one man who displayed symptoms similar to COVID-19 has passed away in Ladakh. This has prompted his village to be locked down, while all educational facilities in the union territory have been ordered to close till March 31st. The death has yet to be confirmed to be a result of the coronavirus outbreak. 

The coronavirus outbreak has affected multiple states and union territories. Fresh cases have been reported today in Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Kerala, and Uttar Pradesh. Cases have also been confirmed in Karnataka, Ladakh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and Telangana. Numerous states and union territories are taking steps to counteract the coronavirus outbreak. 

Screening for COVID-19 is underway at points of entry to ward off coronavirus, which has covered 847,708 international passengers from 8,255 flights. Of the passengers screened, 177 have been hospitalised and 1,921 have displayed coronavirus symptoms. 33,599 passengers are presently under observation; an additional 21,867 passengers have been screened and the monitoring period has expired. 

In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the Union Government has established 52 testing facilities across the country. The centres are dispersed across the states and union territories of Andhra Pradesh, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Odisha, Puducherry, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and West Bengal. 

Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has chaired a high-level meeting with a number of officials, including Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, to discuss the coronavirus outbreak. “We are sending detailed guidelines to all states on ways to contain coronavirus,” Vardhan said. “[We] have asked states to strengthen laboratories and manpower to effectively deal with coronavirus and form early rapid action teams.” 

In addition, over the weekend, Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a meeting with senior officials to review the situation linked to the coronavirus outbreak. He has urged caution, but also emphasised that “nobody needs to panic.” Modi went on to urge that “all departments should work in convergence and action should be initiated for creating awareness in community about the disease and the precautions to be taken.” An official statement added that Modi “exhorted…officers to identify the best practices for COVID-19 management from across the world and within the states, and ensure their adoption.” 

At the global level, the coronavirus outbreak has resulted in 111,465 COVID-19 infections at the time of writing. 3,883 fatalities have ensued. There are 44,911 active cases of the novel coronavirus. Of these, 87 percent (38,932) are of individuals who are in mild condition. The remaining thirteen percent (5,979) of individuals in serious or critical condition. 62,671 people who were infected with COVID-19 have since recovered and been discharged.

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