Six new positive coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Karnataka, taking the total number of affected in the state to 181 so far, the Health Department said on Wednesday. Meanwhile, 28 COVID-19 patients have been recovered while five people have lost their lives.
Earlier on Tuesday, the state government said it will take a decision on the continuation of the 21 days lockdown that ends on April 14, after examining the report by a panel of health experts who have been tasked with devising an exit strategy, which is likely to be submitted in a couple of days.
Primary and Secondary Education Minister Suresh Kumar earlier said, "12 out of 30 districts in the state have remained and have continued to be crona free districts."
"Only in 18 districts there is impact and cases have been reported," he said, adding that Nanjanagudu, Gauribidanur and Bhatkal that had become "hot spots" for COVID-19 cases in the state have not reported any fresh cases.
Asked whether the government completed tracing all those who had attended the congregation, he said, we are waiting for some more information from the districts, once we have it, the details will be shared.
The department said that out of 146 active cases in the state, 143 patients (including 1 pregnant woman) are in isolation at designated hospitals and are stable, while 3 in ICU (one on oxygen and two on Ventilators).
It said, 9 out of total 175 cases detected and confirmed in the state so far are transit passengers of Kerala who have landed in our airports and being treated in Karnataka.
Those discharged include 16 patients from Bengaluru, four from Dakshina Kannada, two each from Kalaburagi and Davangere, and one from Bengaluru Rural; while among those dead are one each are reported from Kalaburgari, Bengaluru, Bagalkote and Tumakuru.
Regarding the lockdown extension in Karnataka, Kumar said the state government has not taken any decision, but there are talks on with committee of health experts about the way in which we should move forward.
"The committee consisting of Narayana Health founder-chairman Dr Devi Prasad Shetty and Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences director Dr C N Manjunath- is likely to submit its report in two days, after which the government will take a decision and announce," he said.
In-charge District Secretaries who had had been to their respective districts in the last week of March on the directions of the CM and had reviewed the situation and measures taken there, have been asked again to go to districts this week.
Kumar said, in-charge District Secretaries, along with reviewing things, will also work on preparations for the future.
In a new move, the government has revised lab testing protocol adding influenza like illness (ILI) patients also for testing in the containment area.
Additional Chief Secretary Health and Family Welfare department Jawaid Akhtar said by adding ILI we have broadened the categories for collection of samples aimed at ramping up the testing, and this will further increase the requirement of testing kits.
"We have taken necessary action for that, at 8 places we are buying automated RNA extraction kits that will speed up frequency of testing in the labs," he added.
In another step, the Department of Health & Family Welfare has notified 8 hospitals as dedicated COVID-19 hospitals.
The designated hospitals are Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital (Raichur), Bidar Institute of Medical Sciences, Kodagu Institute of Medical Sciences, Mandya Institute of Medical Sciences, Hassan Institute of Medical Sciences, Belgaum Institute of Medical Sciences.
Also, Karnataka Institute of Medical Sciences (Dharwad) and District Hospital (Koppal).
Meanwhile, three activists of Muslim outfits have filed separate complaints with the police in Dakshina Kannada district against provocative posts being circulated on the social media 'attacking' the Muslim community.
(With inputs from PTI)