With fresh novel coronavirus cases being reported in the country, the Kerala government on Tuesday decided to step up vigil especially at airports, bus depots and railway stations. The state government has decided to be more vigilant, with the Centre issuing instructions to screen passengers coming from 12 countries, Health minister K K Shailaja told reporters here tonight.
Though no ban can be imposed on foreigners participating in the annual 'Attukal Pongala' festival, one of the largest religious congregations of women, here on March 9, the health team would visit and examine those participating, she said.
At airports, it has been decided to strengthen surveillance by deploying more personnel from modern medicine and AYUSH and operating three shifts for monitoring passengers arriving into the state, she said.
Earlier, Kerala had reported three confirmed cases of the virus from Thrissur, Alappuzha and Kasaragod but the three patients were discharged from hospitals last month following recovery.
With Kerala succeeding in containing the spread of the infection in the first phase, the state has decided to be more vigilant in the second phase as cases are being reported from other parts of the country.
A Keralite, who arrived from Malaysia and died recently, had tested negative for the virus. But since further tests could not be done, his cremation was performed as per standard protocol procedures and taking all precautionary measures, the minister said.
With new cases being reported in the country, Cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba conducted a video conference with all states on Tuesday and appreciated the activities of the Kerala Health department.
He also asked all states to follow the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) developed by Kerala, State Principal secretary, Health, Rajan Khobhragade, said.
Kerala also assured all help to other states in tackling the situation. As of Tuesday, 23 people are in isolation wards in hospitals and 388 under home quarantine, according to sources.