Coronavirus: JK reports 59 new positive cases, total 1449

SRINAGAR: The Government Thursday informed that 59 new positive cases of novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), 08 from Jammu division and 51 from Kashmir division, have been reported today thus taking the total number of positive cases in Jammu and Kashmir to 1449. Also, 02 more COVID-19 deaths have been reported from Kashmir Division.

Health officials are getting a dead body of an 80-year-old woman into an ambulance at GMC Srinagar on Thursday, May 21, 2020. KL Image by Bilal Bahadur

Officials said that Kulgam district reported 21 cases, Anantnag 12, Kupwara 7, Srinagar 5, Budgam 4, Kathua and Ramban 3 each, Ganderbal 2 while Jammu, Kishtwar and Doda reported one case each.

Dr Salim Khan, nodal officer for COVID-19 at the Government Medical College Srinagar, told GNS that 33 samples out of over 700 samples tested at Microbiology Lab of CD Hospital here returned positive for the pathogen.

Among the samples which returned positive, 21 were from District Police Lines Kulgam, 11 from Anantnag including 2 pregnant women besides an intern doctor from Psychiatric Disease Hospital, he said.

Sources said the policemen who have tested positive are aged between 25 to 59 years and are residents of different parts of Valley.

Police said all the 21 were already in isolation from March 18 in a compound separated from DPL Kulgam by 3 kilometres.

“The officials were all part of a special pool of 60 personnel created as a reserve exclusively for Covid-19 duties at Quarantine and isolation centers, for handling Covid-19 patients and potential carriers and for acting as substitutes for police stations in case of covid breakout in a particular unit,” police said in a statement.

The samples of the officials were being taken from time to time as a precautionary measure, it said. “When one such sample turned positive four days ago, Health authorities were requested to take samples of all the officials present in the reserve,” the police said, adding, “There is no need to panic as all the officials have been and are in isolation and were never put on public interface duties such as nakas, police stations, etc.”

Nodal officer for coronavirus control at SKIMS, Dr G H Yatoo said that 14 test samples returned positive for the pathogen.  However, sources said that three among them pertained to those who had previously tested positive and samples were sent for a retest.

Professor Farooq Jan, Medical Superintendent of the hospital said that the seven among the samples which returned positive were received from CMO Srinagar and includes 26-year-old from Maisuma, 21-year-old from Bemina and seven from Kaweri, Reshigund and main Kupwara, all travelers with a history of travel to Delhi, Ambala, Dehradun and UP. He said two samples were received from DH Ganderbal and include 37-year-old from Ganderbal and a 22-year-old youth from Safapora. The three other samples were from DH Pulwama and include a 60-year-old man and two women—one aged 20 and other 50—from Chatabal Kulgam.\

Meanwhile, four samples out of 400 tested at SKIMS testing lab returned positive. They include 3 males—2 from Soibug and one from Naru besides a female from Loolipora areas Budgam district. Also, sources said an operation (LSCS ) was performed on a Covid positive pregnant female from Anantnag at the hospital. “Both mother and child are ok,” a doctor at the hospital said.

Seven cases were reported from private Lab—two from Kathua, one each from Haryana, Jodhpur Rajasthan, Dyala, Kishtwar and Anantnag.

According to the daily Media Bulletin on novel Coronavirus (Covid-19), out of 1449 positive cases, 745 are Active Positive, 684 have recovered and 20 have died; 02 in Jammu division and 18 in Kashmir division.

Moreover, 06 more COVID-19 patients have recovered and discharged from various hospitals, 03 from Jammu division and 03 from Kashmir Division.

The Bulletin further said that out of 107108 test results available, 105659 samples have been tested as negative till May 21, 2020.

Additionally, till date 125866 travellers and persons in contact with suspected cases have been enlisted for surveillance which included 33586 persons in-home quarantine including facilities operated by government, 57 in Hospital Quarantine, 745  in hospital isolation and 21893 under home surveillance. Besides, 69565 persons have completed their surveillance period.

Providing district-wise breakup, the Bulletin said that Bandipora has 137 positive cases with 08 Active Positive, 128 recovered, 01 death; Srinagar has 174 positive cases (including 05 cases reported today) with 71 Active Positive, 97 recovered, 06 deaths; Anantnag district has 264 positive cases (including 12 cases reported today), with 171 Active Positive, 89 recovered,  04 deaths; Baramulla has 129 positive cases with 34 Active Positive, 91 recovered, 04 deaths; Shopian has 109 positive cases with 11 Active Positive, 98 recovered; Kupwara has 125 positive cases (including 07 cases reported today) with 77 Active Positive, 48 recovered; Budgam has 62 positive cases (including 04 cases reported today), with 30 Active Positive and 30 recovered cases and 02 death; Ganderbal has 27 positive cases (including 02 cases reported today) with 12 Active cases and 15 recoveries; Kulgam has 192 positive cases (including 21 reported today), with 181 Active Positive and  10 recoveries and 01 death and Pulwama reported 19 positive cases with 10 active positive, 09 recovered (including 03 cases recoveries reported today).

Similarly, Jammu has 68 positive cases (including 01 cases reported today) with 36 active positive cases and 31 recoveries and 01 death; Udhampur has 33 positive cases with 11 active positive case, 21 recovered and 01 death; Samba has 16 positive cases with 10 Active Positive and 06 recoveries; Rajouri has 08 positive cases with 04 active positive cases and 04 recovered; Kathua has 40 positive cases (including 03 cases reported today) with 36 Active positive and 04 recovered (including 03 cases recoveries reported today); Kishtwar has 07 positive cases (including 01 cases reported today) with 06 active positive case and 01 recovered; Ramban has 30 positive cases (including 03 cases reported today) with 29 active positive and 01 recovered; Reasi has 04 positive cases with 03 active positive and 01 recovered, Poonch has 04 active positive cases while Doda has 01 active positive case.

The Bulletin said that the breakup represents districts from which the patients have been traced or are ordinarily residing.

The advisory has informed the people that offices and other workplaces are relatively close setting with shared spaces and thus COVID-19 infection can spread relatively fast among officials, staffs and visitors. The basic preventive measures need to be observed by all employees and visitors at all times; Physical distancing of at least two meter to be followed at all times, use of face covers/masks to be mandatory,  practice frequent hand washing (for at least 40-60 seconds) even when hands are not visibly dirty and use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (for at least 20 seconds), respiratory etiquettes to be strictly followed which involves the strict practise of covering one’s mouth and nose while coughing/sneezing with a tissue/handkerchief/flexed elbow and disposing off used tissues properly besides  Self-monitoring of health by all and reporting any illness at the earliest.

The bulletin again explained that early detection of COVID-19 can prevent the spread of disease so we need to be responsible for the well-being of ourselves and everyone around us. “Not disclosing symptoms could put the life of individuals and their families at risk. In case of symptoms like fever, cough and difficulty in breathing report early. Do not fear, call COVID-19 helpline numbers and seek medical advice”.

As a measure for social distancing in public places and workplaces wearing a face cover is compulsory.

Advisory has further exhorted upon the people not to step out of home, unless absolutely necessary. “If you have to move out for unavoidable reasons, ensure that you wear a mask and practice social distancing, personal hygiene and frequent handwashing with soap and water.”

In case of any emergency people can avail free ambulance services 24×7 at their doorsteps by calling on toll-free number 108 while as pregnant women and sick infants can avail free ambulance services by dialling toll-free number 102.

Health officials and Drivers ready to drive the dead body of 80-year-old COVID-19 patient from Bemina at GMC Srinagar to home on Thursday, May 21, 2020. KL Image by Bilal Bahadur

People can also call on toll-free national helpline number 1075; J&K COVID-19 Helpline Numbers 0191- 2549676 (UT level Cell), 0191-2520982, 0191-2674444, 0191-2674115 (For Jammu Division), 0194-2440283 & 0194-2430581 (For Kashmir Division) for support, guidance, and response to health-related queries on Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).

The public is advised to strictly follow the advisories issued by the government from time to time and rely only on the information released by the government through the daily media bulletin to print and electronic media.

People are also advised to refrain from spreading rumours and pay no heed to them at the same time.

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