Udupi: Coronavirus breathes down district's neck – 7,016 await test reports

Daijiworld Media Network - Udupi (HB/SP)

Udupi, May 28: The district can hardly breathe it easy as far as risks posed by coronavirus are concerned. All the laboratories authorized for conducting tests are overflowing with throat swab samples.

The district which was grouped a green zone turned red soon. As of today, 147 positive cases have been reported. Hence, the district stands fifth in the state for number of cases reported. With a huge burst of new cases, the district has slipped down and there is little hope of it getting out of red zone soon.

Representational image

During the last two to three days, however, there has been a significant drop in the number of coronavirus positive cases here. But this does not signify that the number of positive cases in the district is on the decline. The people of the city cannot relax under the assumption that their troubles are over. This could have been caused by the delay with which reports are received from government-recognized COVID 19 testing labs.

As per the May 27 health bulletin, about 7,016 test reports are awaited in the district. It is also learnt that throat swabs of thousands of people who are undergoing quarantine, are yet to be collected and sent for testing. This cannot be attributed to the failure of the district administration because only a handful of cases were found in the district, and almost 90 percent of the remaining cases pertain to returnees from other states and foreign countries. Many of these people kept in quarantine are proving to be coronavirus positive.

In many cases, people who have already spent 14 days in quarantine, whose reports were not received, are compelled to spend two more weeks under institutional quarantine. Those staying in hotels have to meet mounting bills, many who are in quarantine, rue. Vulnerable people like pregnant women, children and aged ones are facing numerous problems. As many as 4,879 are either suffering from severe acute respiratory infections or were in contact with coronavirus positive people. A total of 8,168 are under institutional quarantine. There is worry about pending reports on one side, while on the other, those whose reports are pending want to know how many days they have to stay in quarantine.

Former minister Pramod Madhwaraj, has questioned the delay in conducting coronavirus tests through a tweet.

According to an order issued by the state government, have completed 7 days of quarantine, will go under 7 days of home quarantine. From three days, hundreds of people were released from quarantine. But high risk and SARI cases are posing danger. According to tahsildar, a detailed list of home quarantine people will be sent to local body officials to track quarantined people.

KMC medical superintendent, Dr Avinash Shetty, says that high risk throat swab samples are tested here. "We have conducted tests in respect of about 900 throat swab samples after May 19. Every day, an average 150 to 200 samples are tested here. In case pooling (group) testing is permitted, 400 tests can be done. But in this system, if one positive case is found, the entire process has to be put through again for that batch. This takes more time. Till May 27, over 250 throat swab samples have been tested, and in spite of pressure, we have been working to the fullest. There was shortfall of testing kits for conducting tests till May 26, and we received stock on May 26. Within two days, an integrated lab is getting ready at KMC, and we will be able to conduct tests up to 600 samples a day," he explained.

Government not encouraging well equipped KMC hospital

There are questions raised in public circles why the government is not encouraging well equipped KMC hospital to upgrade instead of waiting to open another government Covid lab even though the hospital is well known as the first private Covid-19 testing lab. Several people have completed their quarantine duration and waiting for test reports. Several Covid cases can be disposed of in a week if the government thinks and acts quickly.

Quarantine has become a punishment for those who are waiting for reports. It will be better if the state government considers the matter seriously and takes suitable action, opine people.

District hospital

At the same time, preparations to open a COVID test lab are being made at the district hospital at Ajjarkad here. The district administration has already released Rs 45 lac to Nirmiti Kenda for this purpose. As per the current facility, work can be conducted in three shifts with each shift lasting four to six hours. Per day, we can get only 96 results which is grossly insufficient. We expect the new lab to open soon. It is expected to become functional by June 15," said district surgeon Madhusudan Nayak.

Nodal officer of COVID 19 in health department, Dr Prashanth Bhat, said that over a thousand throat swab samples are collected every day and the labs are full and reports are awaited. He said that no one can be sent home just because their reports have not been received. "For us, health of all 13 lac people is important. There is no other go for the quarantined people other than waiting," he stated.

Dr Hemanth says that coronavirus being a new pandemic, it takes time. He said that the doctors should pay attention on self-protection and work with patience. He said that in case report is positive, approval from Bengaluru is needed to announce it, which takes time.

As per government order, extension of Seva Sindhu pass facility has been suspended till May 31. Therefore, the number of people under quarantine may come down. But coronavirus menace is here to stay for the present, and the people of the district have to be mentally prepared to face this reality.





Comment on this article

  • Ajay Rebello, Kallianpur

    Thu, May 28 2020

    There are other hospitals besides kmc which have well equipped and trained labs. Private hospitals need the ability to test if they have to reopen without the threat of being locked down because of spread.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse


Title : Udupi: Coronavirus breathes down district's neck – 7,016 await test reports


You have 2000 characters left.


Please write your correct name and email address. Kindly do not post any personal, abusive, defamatory, infringing, obscene, indecent, discriminatory or unlawful or similar comments. Daijiworld.com will not be responsible for any defamatory message posted under this article.

Please note that sending false messages to insult, defame, intimidate, mislead or deceive people or to intentionally cause public disorder is punishable under law. It is obligatory on Daijiworld to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments, to the authority concerned upon request.

Hence, sending offensive comments using daijiworld will be purely at your own risk, and in no way will Daijiworld.com be held responsible.

Security Validation

Enter the characters in the image