Corona Completes Tour

Highly infectious novel corona virus which was first reported from Bhubaneswar on March 15, Wednesday completed its tour to Odisha.

Beginning its journey from Khurda district, COVID-19 completed its tour at Rayagada on June 3.

While the first case was a returnee from Italy and a resident of Badagada in Bhubaneswar, the Rayagada man had visited Delhi before being detected as a COVID patient.

So far, the COVID has spread its tentacles across the state with as many as eight districts reporting more than 100 cases each. They are: Ganjam (499), Jajpur (290), Balasore (178), Khurda (170), Kendrapara (161), Cuttack (126), Bhadrak (123) and Bolangir (102).

Meanwhile, the number of COVID-19 cases in the state has mounted to 2,388 with 143 more people tested positive for the disease. Of them, 132 were detected from among quarantine centres.

Remaining 11 were found due to contact tracing of COVID-19 patients.

A total of 91 patients were cured of the disease on Wednesday, raising the number of people who have recovered from COVID-19 to 1,416 in the state, the official said.

The number of active COVID-19 cases in the state stands at 963. Seven persons have died of the disease, while two others who had tested positive for it died of other reasons, the official said.

The health department has conducted 1,62,891 COVID-19 tests so far.

Meanwhile, with Odisha reporting above 100 cases daily for three consecutive days, the state government on Wednesday asked the district collectors and SPs to focus on community monitoring of corona situation.
The direction was issued to district authorities by Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy who interacted with collectors and SPs through a video conference. He also reviewed the situation in each district.
"The month of June is very crucial for all of us in the fight against the COVID-19. Around 4.5 lakh people have returned to Odisha from different parts of the country. Many people have been discharged from institutional quarantine to ''home quarantine''. We have to keep a strict vigil and enforce the laws", Mr.Tripathy told Collectors and SPs.
The direction was significant as government noticed that some people do not adhere to the home quarantine norms after being released from temporary medical centres. As many as 45 people from the community have been detected positive for Covid-19 in last three days, official sources said.
Mr.Tripathy directed the collectors to form ward level monitoring committees and strengthen community surveillance. Active participation of the community can check spike in spread of the disease, he said.
However, both the government and experts have made it clear that there has been no trace of community transmission of the disease in Odisha.
"There has been no community transmission in Odisha so far. Local people who have been infected were mostly dealing with quarantine centres," said Director of Life Sciences (ILS), Dr Ajay Parida said
The chief secretary also reminded the district collectors to follow quarantine protocols scrupulously without any relaxation. Of the 4.5 lakh migrants who have returned from states with high Covid incidence, more than 2.5 lakh are now in different quarantine centres, while the rest have been discharged on completion of mandatory institutional isolation.
A total of 16,651 temporary medical camps or quarantine centres with over 7.42 lakh beds are operating in 6798 gram panchayats across the state. The returnees have to spend mandatory institutional quarantine at the TMC for seven days and then stay in home quarantine for subsequent seven days.
However, there have been instances of violation of home quarantine norms, said an official.
In order to tackle the situation arising out of returnees flouting home quarantine norms, the district administration in coastal Kendrapara has made it compulsory for migrants to undergo institutional quarantine for 14 days mandatorily, he said.
The Chief Secretary also asked the district authorities to intensify the IEC (Information, Education and Campaign) drive at all levels to keep the people alert and careful.
People should be convinced not to confuse the relaxation for livelihood as relaxation in social distancing and, the ''social distancing'' norms must be enforced strictly, Mr.Tripathy said.

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