Covid-19: Kerala issues SOP for incoming domestic travellers

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on May 24, 2020

File photos of passengers from first batch of evacuees from the Gulf at the Cochin International Airport   -  THE HINDU

Infections at new high ahead of flights resuming

Kerala is engaged in a grim battle with number of positive Covid-19 rising exponentially into the last weekend after scores of citizens streamed back home from other states and abroad. Admittedly, the state had expected the flattened curve to reverse and trend up day post partial easing of the lockdown.

Till now, 88,640 people have arrived in the state from abroad and other states - 7,303 through airports; 1,621 through seaport; 3,108 by train and 76,608 by road. A little more than half of all infected have come from abroad and 21 per cent from other states, while 28 per cent got the virus through contact.

Domestic flights resuming

Of the 8,924 streaming into the state after the lockdown was partially eased, 120 have been infected (1.34 per cent) while even lower 0.22 per cent of those coming from other states (206 of 89716) were found to carry the virus. This is largely as per expectations of the state health department.

Meanwhile, the State government has published a detailed guidelines/standard operating procedures being made applicable in the context of context of domestic flights resuming operations from tomorrow (May 25, Monday). Travellers have been instructed to register their details in the Covid19 Jagratha portal.

Register on portal first

One has to select the airport of arrival, and if f more than one is travelling in a single ticket, details of all shall be entered by anyone in the group using 'add family member' option. Travel permit will be issued with a QR Code in the registered mobile number and email.

The airline staff shall insist the details of entry pass obtained from the portal before issuing the boarding pass. Separate request has been made to them for this. Travellers can use own vehicle or rented vehicle for travel to their home and shall show the details of registration in the registration desk in the airport.

Quarantine norms

After undergoing medical screening for any symptoms of Covid-19, asymptomatic persons shall undergo home quarantine and symptomatic will be sent to either the Covid Care Centre or hospital. All persons entering the state shall remain under home quarantine for 14 days from the date of arrival.

However, if the concerned local body has not confirmed the availability of home quarantine in the portal before they reach the destination airport, travellers will be send to institutional quarantine in the district concerned till the local body confirms the availability of home quarantine facility.

Buses on standby

Pick up vehicles for arriving passengers will be permitted to enter airport with one person (excluding driver of the vehicle) at a designated place subject to social distancing norms. If the persons who pick up the passenger come in to physical contact with the traveller, they shall also remain under home quarantine for 14 days.

The district administration pertaining to those districts with airports will make arrangements for operating government buses to other district headquarters/ major towns to drop the arriving passengers enabling them to reach home.

62 new cases on Saturday

Meanwhile, the state recorded the most number of positives reported on a single day at 62 on Saturday, beating the 42 of Friday; and 24 each of Wednesday and Thursday. Till the third wave of infections revealed itself in this manner, the 39 recorded a long way back on March 27 was the highest.

Of the 62 new case recorded on Saturday, 19 persons were from Palakkad district; 16 from Kannur; eight from Malappuram; five from Alappuzha; four each from Kozhikode and Kasaragod; three from Kollam; two in Kottayam; and one from Wayanad.

Origin of travellers

Of these, 31 had returned from other states (Maharashtra-13; Tamil Nadu-12; Gujarat-2; Karnataka-2; Uttar Pradesh-1 and Delhi-1) and 18 have come back from abroad (the UAE-9; Saudi Arabia-3; Kuwait-2; Maldives-1; Singapore-1; Muscat-1; and Qatar-1). As many as 13 are cases of local transmission, of which seven are health workers - three in Palakkad; two each from Kannur and Kozhikode.

Only three patients under treatment for the virus tested negative on Saturday - one patient each from Kollam, Kottayam and Kasaragod. The total number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in Kerala is 794 and presently, 275 patients are under treatment. So far, 515 patients (64.8 per cent) have been cured of the virus.

Numbers under surveillance

There are 91,084 persons under observation in various districts, of which 90,416 are under surveillance at their homes or institutional quarantine centres and 668 are isolated in hospitals. Saturday saw 182 new cases with symptoms being hospitalised today.

So far, samples from 52,771 people have been sent for testing and 51,045 have been confirmed as not infected. Apart from this, as part of sentinel surveillance, 7,672 samples from people in high-risk category were tested separately. Of these, 7,147 samples have tested negative. In the last 24 hours, 2,026 samples were tested.

Nine places were declared as hotspots today - seven in Kannur, and one each in Palakkad and Kottayam districts. There are 37 hotspots in the State now.

Published on May 24, 2020

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