Amid new strain scare, Andhra to trace, test, quarantine UK returnees

The Andhra Pradesh government will trace, test and quarantine all the people who returned to the state from the UK, where a new strain of the coronavirus has been detected.

“We have issued orders to Collectors and SPs to track those who are coming in from abroad and take these preventive measures, which will be pursued until any new news regarding this issue,” said Health Commissioner Katamneni Bhaskar.

Following the Centre’s directive, the state government also issued an order for RT-PCR testing of all passengers flying in from the UK, through connecting flights and those who entered the country through any other means.

In the event of a UK returnee test negative, he will be put under mandatory 14-day home quarantine.

Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, who held a review meeting on the matter, said: “We should be cautious and do the needful to ensure that we do not let the new strain impact the citizens as adversely as it has in other parts of the world.”

The surveillance teams have been given a mandate and an action plan to physically monitor all those returnees who tested negative in the RT-PCR test and have been sent to home isolation.

“The teams should ensure their proper isolation, monitoring of parameters and ensure follow-up RT-PCR test after 7 days of disembarkation,” said an official statement.

Field teams consisting of a medical officer and an ANM have been directed to mandatorily visit the international travelers on a daily basis to update their vital health parameters in the home quarantine app.

“In case any such persons develop symptoms before seven days, they must be shifted to hospitals and tested for RT-PCR immediately,” the statement added.

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