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Health Minister Appeals for ‘Collective Effort’ to Combat Coronavirus

Health Minister Appeals for ‘Collective Effort’ to Combat Coronavirus

New Delhi: The Union health minister Harsh Vardhan held a flurry of meetings on Wednesday to assess and coordinate measures needed to be taken to control the spread of the coronavirus. According to the latest updates, 28 people in India have tested positive for COVID 19, the disease that is caused by the virus. 16 of the 28 are Italians who were on a trip to India, while the others are Indian nationals, some of whom have been infected locally.

In a meeting with officials of the Delhi government and Delhi’s health minister Satyendra Jain, Vardhan stressed the importance of collective efforts in dealing with the situation. “We have to work as a unit to combat the threat due to COVID-19 in the nation and a coordinated and collective effort in a mission mode is needed,” he said.

Delhi has so far seen one case of a local being infected – a 45-year-old who had travelled to Italy. He was not screened at the airport as the flight he was on had arrived from Vienna which was not listed as a high risk place of origin. The gentleman had subsequently dined at a high end restaurant, travelled to Agra and been at a birthday party.

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The government has taken steps to identify the individuals who had been in contact with the person. All those who have shown symptoms have been moved to hospitals and tested.

Three schools in Noida have been shut since the case of the 45-year-old was detected as some students were in contact with him at a birthday party organised for his son.

The Union government has earmarked the importance of isolation facilities being identified and readied by states in anticipation of the spread of the virus.

The state has also said that from now all passengers entering India from overseas flights will be screened for the virus. Earlier, passengers from only ‘high risk’ countries were being screened.

Visas that had been granted to citizens of Japan, Iran, Italy and South Korea have been revoked as these are considered high risk countries.

The railway ministry has also issued an advisory suggesting that information regarding the virus be prominently displayed in trains and railway stations.

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