COVID-19: Odisha to Screen Passengers Arriving From 12 States
With the number of COVID-19 cases on the rise in certain states, the Odisha government has expressed its concern and has decided to step up its efforts to screen passengers at the airports. As per reports, people coming from at least 12 states will go through thermal screening to prevent a new spread here.
The states include Maharashtra, Kerala, Telangana, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Punjab, Delhi, Chandigarh, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh.
The Collectors, Municipal Commissioners, Directors of Biju Patnaik International Airport and Jharsuguda Airport as well as General Manager (Operations) of East Coast Railway were asked to arrange for the screening of returnees and testing those with symptoms at airports and railway stations.
Passengers arriving in Odisha from these 12 states will be screened by thermal scanners and the ones found having symptoms will be tested by rapid antigen kits, which will be made available on site.
Surveillance at the district level has also been stepped up, informed Additional Chief Secretary of Health department, PK Mohapatra. “Though the Covid situation is under control in Odisha, these 12 states have been constantly reporting high cases. Some of the states have also detected new mutants of the virus. We have to properly screen people coming from these States and anyone found positive in tests will be put in isolation and treated”, he said.
Even though the state has suggested the use of Rapid Antigen Testing (RAT) for testing, health experts have advised the state government to conduct RT-PCR tests of all the suspects as the RAT has a moderate sensitivity of around 50 percent.
Meanwhile, the number of new cases has gone up to 89 in the last 24 hours in the state which was reporting below 70 cases a day for the last week. The number of active cases in Odisha now stands at 556.