Kerala records 32 new cases, one death

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on March 31, 2020

The victim was a 68-year-old man, with no travel travel history abroad

Kerala has reported the second death from the coronavirus infection, after an elderly patient treated for serious underlying conditions, passed away at the Government Medical College in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday night. The Medical Superintendent said that the 68-year-old was on ventilator support for the past five days.

The State had reported the first death from the virus in Kochi, when another elderly patient died in the Government Medical College, Kalamassery, Ernakulam, on Saturday, after being put on life support system for severe pneumonia and other related complications. This patient had travelled to Kochi from Dubai.

No travel history abroad

In contrast, doctors and Health Department officials do not know how the patient in Thiruvananthapuram, with no travel history abroad, contracted the virus. His antecedents could not be ascertained, since he had relapsed into a coma after being admitted into the hospital. His relatives told Health Department officials that he had attended a wedding reception and a funeral between March 5 and 23.

An alert has been sounded to those people who were present on these occasions.

The patient had presented Covid-19 symptoms on March 13, and was admitted into the isolation ward on March 23, with underlying conditions of elevated high pressure and thyroid. The first diagnostic test had proved negative, but the subsequent test on March 29 confirmed that he was infected. In between he suffered a cardiac arrest and serious impairment of the kidneys.

A continued dialysis was being performed on him since then, and he was put on ventilator support for the past five days, the medical superintendent said.

More cases reported

An incremental 32 positive cases were identified in the State on Monday, taking the total to 213, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said. Of these, 17 persons had travelled from Dubai, and the rest belong to their primary contacts.

Kasaragod district, which has emerged as the new epicentre of the infections, has accounted for 17 of the 32 infections on Monday; neighbouring Kannur reported 11 cases and two cases each in Wayanad and Idukki.

The total number of persons under observation in the state are 1,57,253, of which 1,56,660 are home quarantined, while 623 are in isolation wards.

A total of 6,991 samples have been sent for testing out of which 6,031 have proved negative in the State. The State government proposes to commence rapid testing soon, the Chief Minister said.

Miraculous recovery in Kottayam

Amid the gloom of the toll from the virus rising to two in the State, Monday also delivered some good news with an octogenarian and non-agenarian parents and high-risk prime contacts of a family that returned from Italy being discharged from the Government Medical College in Kottayam.

These patients of very advanced age with comorbidities were at a critical stage midway through their stay in hospital. Doctors described as miraculous their successive stages of recovery and before being cleared virus-free on Monday.

The virus carrier family of three — a 55-year-old man, his 53-year-old wife and 26-year-old son — had infected six patients who had in close contact with them and two neighbours. The NRI family had come from Italy to Kochi via Doha on February 29 on a 19-day holiday.

It had allegedly evaded screening at the CIAL Airport in Kochi and headed straight home to Pathanamthitta. All of them have been discharged from hospital.

Published on March 31, 2020

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