Coronavirus outbreak: 366 Indians to be evacuated from Wuhan and quarantined

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 31, 2020

A view of the quarantine facility which has been set up by the Army at Manesar, Haryana   -  PTI

Over 366 Indians are being evacuated from China and flown to New Delhi by Saturday early morning due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019 nCoV) outbreak.

Sources said that they will be directly escorted to a quarantine facility.

India had earlier written to the Chinese authorities and was preparing to send a plane to evacuate Indians from China. The Air India flight landed in China on Friday evening at 5.17 pm.

The Indian Army and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) are readying quarantine beds for students and families travelling back from China in Manesar, Haryana and West Delhi.


A Press Information Bureau statement said, all male passengers (approximately 280) will be sent to the Manesar camp, and families and females (approximately 90) will be housed in the ITBP camp. In addition, a 50-bed critical care facility has been set up in Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi for patients.

A press statement released by the Indian Army said that responding to an emergency requirement to create and manage a quarantine facility for those arriving from Wuhan, it has created a facility near Manesar, Haryana.

Also, Indo-Tibetan has created an arrangement at its Chawla Camp, West Delhi.

The Indian Army statement explains that the procedure of screening and quarantine will comprise two steps, the first one being screening at airport followed by quarantine at Manesar and if any individual is suspected to be infected, the person will be shifted to the isolation ward at Base Hospital Delhi Cantonment (BHDC).

Overall, over 7,818 patients have been confirmed to be positive for the air-borne virus, of which 7,736 are from China. The virus has claimed 170 lives till now.

Screening at the airport will be done by a joint team of Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) and Airport Health Authority (APHO). The individuals will be classified into three groups:

Suspect Case – those showing any signs of fever and/or cough and/or respiratory distress will be directly transferred to BHDC.

Close Contact – persons without symptoms but having visited a seafood/animal market or a health facility or having come into contact with a Chinese person with symptoms in the last 14 days will be escorted in an earmarked vehicle directly to the quarantine facility.

Non Contact Case – Any individual without any symptom(s) or contact or who does not fit into either of the above category will also be clubbed along with the close contact category and sent to the quarantine facility.

Layout of facility

The facility consists of accommodation barracks for the students, administrative and medical facility area. To prevent mass outbreak, the facility has been divided into sectors, each with a maximum capacity of 50 students. Each barrack has been further subdivided.

Routine at the facility

People in one sector will not be allowed to intermingle with those in other sectors. The students will undergo medical examination daily. All the staff, healthcare workers and housekeeping staff must wear personal protective equipment (PPE) such as mask, eye shield, shoe cover, gown and gloves at all times.

Visitors and all students will wear a three layered mask at all times. After 14 days, persons without any symptoms will be allowed to go home. Detailed documentation will be sent to the District/State surveillance units for further monitoring.

Those found infected will be shifted to BHDC’s isolation ward for further medical exam and recovery. Samples for viral confirmation will be sent to NCDC, Delhi, and patients will be discharged only after clinical recovery and two successive negative samples tested for n-COV. Apart from playing games, watching TV and having meals together within a barrack, no one will be allowed to interact with the members of another barrack and definitely not another sector.

Manpower at the facility

The facility will be administered by a nominated Officer In Charge (OIC) who will be assisted by a Community Medicine Specialist, two Nursing Officers, a Lady Medical Officer and one Nursing Assistant. No civilian or serving personnel detailed to work inside the facility will be allowed to go outside unless compelled by extreme emergency situation.

Published on January 31, 2020

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