The State Health Department has traced and tested 1,981 UK returnees and 1,871 of their close contacts so far. Approximately 2,300 passengers travelled from the UK between November 25 and December 23, said officials, adding that efforts were on to trace the remaining passengers and their contacts.
So far, 44 persons, including those who returned from the UK and their contacts have tested positive for COVID-19, including the one patient who was found to be
carrying the mutated strain of coronavirus. The results of the genomic sequencing for the remaining 43 patients are awaited. Officials added that they were yet to receive the COVID test results of 12 persons.
All those who tested positive, including returnees and their contacts, are kept in separate isolation wards at government hospitals.
In Chennai, nine returnees and six of their contacts tested positive – the highest in the State. Among other districts, three passengers each from Chengalpattu, Thanjavur, Madurai and The Nilgiris, and one each from Theni, Nagapattinam and Coimbatore have tested positive 19 so far, according to Health Department officials.
Meanwhile, Tamilnadu recorded 921 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, including one imported case from Karnataka. The total number of cases in the State reached 8,18,935.
In the meantime, India will have a dry run of its Covid inoculation programme today, across all States and UTs, with Tamilnadu conducting the same in 17 centres in five districts.
Health Minister C Vijayabhaskar said, ‘We have trained over 21,000 health workers on administering the vaccine. The state government has already identified 47,200 centres where the vaccine will be administered to people once the drive begins in the country’.