Conduct COVID-19 tests on West Bengal returnees: Odisha NHM asks Khurda district officials

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Conduct COVID-19 tests on West Bengal returnees: Odisha NHM asks Khurda district officials
Bhubaneswar, Apr 29 () The National Health Mission,Odisha has asked the district administration of Khurda, where47 COVID-19 cases have been reported till Wednesday, toconduct coronavirus tests on people who had recently visitedWest Bengal, a senior official said.

Odisha NHM director Shalini Pandit in a letter to theKhurda district collector S K Rout said that the persons whotravelled to West Bengal should be traced, home quarantinedand their samples collected for testing.

A list of the persons who had visited the neighbouringstate in the last few weeks during the ongoing lockdown wasalso attached to the letter.

At least 250 people in the district were found to havetravelled to West Bengal during the lockdown period, officialssaid.

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Of the 250 people, about 140 people reside inBhubaneswar.

The list included the names of almost all areas underthe Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation jurisdiction from wherethe people had travelled to West Bengal.

Of the total 122 COVID-19 cases reported in the stateso far, 47 were detected from Khurda district, of whichBhubaneswar is a part.

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Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said on Wednesday, ofthe 122 COVID-19 patients in the state, 50 persons hadrecently returned from West Bengal.

"Looking after West Bengal returnees has also become amajor challenge for the state," he said.

The state government had recently undertaken asurveillance of the people through mobile tracking after aspike in COVID-19 cases in Bhadrak, Jajpur and Balasoredistricts.

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A majority of the people in the three districts whotested positive for COVID-19 had links to West Bengalprompting the government to take this step.

As many as 2,900 people from 29 of the 30 districts ofOdisha, were found to have travelled to West Bengal betweenMarch 25 and April 23, the officials said.

The surveillance was done by tracking the mobilephones, they said.

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Meanwhile, the Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO),Khurda, has started the process of tracing the people who hadrecently visited West Bengal.

The officials said, similar letters have been served tothe authorities of the remaining 29 districts. AAMMM MM
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