Three flyers check in to Fever Hospital in Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Worried over the steady rise in cases of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in China, three persons from Hyderabad, with a history of travel to the neighbouring country, got themselves admitted to Fever Hospital in Nallakunta.

Two persons, who reached Hyderabad a few days ago from Hong Kong, voluntarily got themselves admitted to Fever Hospital on Sunday, while the third person did so on Saturday evening. Authorities at the hospital collected swab samples of the patient who was admitted on Saturday evening and sent it to National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune, for nCoV testing.

“The two patients admitted on Sunday only have cold and no fever. We decided not to send their swab samples for testing and keep them under observation. There is a lot of apprehension over the rise of nCoV cases in China and that’s why persons with a travel history to China should voluntarily get themselves admitted,” Fever Hospital Superintendent Dr K Shankar said.

Officials said special isolation rooms were set aside at the hospital to provide bedside care to such patients. In case, the condition of the patients deteriorates, they would be provided with ventilator care at Gandhi Hospital.

Airport alert

The health officials continued to take up thorough screening of passengers reaching Hyderabad from Hong Kong. So far, no passenger indicated or complained about any discomfort to the health officials posted at the Shamshabad international airport. All the airports in the two Telugu-speaking States are under 24-hour surveillance.

“We are screening international passengers from Hong Kong using thermal scanners. In-flight announcements are being made, and passengers with fever and high temperature are being urged to visit the airport’s healthcare facility,” Dr Anuradha Medoju, Regional Director, Health Ministry, said.

The officials are also asking travellers to visit healthcare establishments in case they develop cold and fever after a few days of reaching Hyderabad or any other part of Telangana.

Central teams to Hyderabad

To oversee and review the preparedness to deal with coronavirus cases, a team of experts from the Health Ministry are expected to visit Hyderabad. The central team comprising a public health expert, clinician and microbiologist will review end-to-end preparedness for the management of 2019-nCoV at airports. This would include thermal scanning of passengers and transferring patients to hospitals for isolation.

The central team is also expected to visit tertiary healthcare facilities, including Fever Hospital and Gandhi Hospital, to review isolation wards and availability of Personnel Protective Equipment (PPE) and masks, among others. The teams will review and come up with solutions on infection control, surveillance and other guidelines.

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