New Delhi: With five new cases of the novel coronavirus being reported from Kerala on Sunday, the total number of COVID-19 cases in India stands at 39.
The new coronavirus cases from the Pathanamthitta district of Kerala were confirmed by Kerala state Health Minister K.K. Shailaja, who said the family acted irresponsibly by not reporting to the authorities after arriving from Italy.
Consequently, the three patients including a 54-year-old man, his 53-year-old wife and their 24-year-old son, also infected two of their relatives, 65-year-old man and his 61-year-old wife.
“At the moment, we are more concerned of giving full medical care to the three and two of their relatives,” said Shailaja.
As on Saturday, there were at least 34 cases of COVID-19 reported from India. The latest were from Ladakh and Tamil Nadu on Saturday, having travel history from Iran and Oman respectively.
On January 30, a medical student from Thrissur studying in Wuhan, China, became the first coronavirus positive patient in the country and soon two of her classmates also turned positive. All three of them have now recovered.
At present, there are at least 16 Italian nationals in India, who tested positive for the disease. Other cases in the country have been reported from Agra, New Delhi and Gurugram.
As many as 52 laboratories are now operational across the country for testing COVID-19 virus. An additional 57 laboratories have been provided with viral transport media and swabs for sample collection.
According to the Health Ministry, over seven lakh people from more than 7,000 flights have been screened at different airports.
In order to spread awareness, a special COVID-19 mobile phone caller tune has been launched by all telecom operators, playing basic infection prevention messages when a caller dials-out.
Deaths Surge to 19 in US, Declares Emergency
With two more deaths at the hands of the novel coronavirus in the United States, the national casualty rate now stands at a total to 19. The latest two infections were reported in the Washington state. At the same time, a person who attended a gathering of top US political conservatives including President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence has tested positive for the new coronavirus. The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is one of the country’s largest annual gatherings of political conservatives, attracting thousands, and in addition to Trump and Pence the February 26-29 event near Washington also featured several Cabinet members and top White House officials. This attendee, however, had no interaction with the president or the vice president and never attended the events in the main hall.
The number of infections in New York rose to 89, and governor Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency. “It allows expedited purchasing and expedited hiring, which is what we need right now,” Cuomo told the media.
Earlier, California Governor Gavin Newsom had declared an emergency as he reported the state’s first fatality from the illness—an elderly person who had taken a cruise to Mexico—while health officials in nearby Washington state said a 10th person had died there. “The State of California is deploying every level of government to help identify cases and slow the spread of this coronavirus,” Newsom told reporters.
President Donald Trump had signed an $8.3 billion measure to help tackle the coronavirus outbreak. The legislation provides federal public health agencies with money for vaccines, tests and potential treatments and helps state and local governments prepare and respond to the threat. The rapid spread of the virus has rocked financial markets, interrupted travel and threatens to affect everyday life in the United States.
Trump had planned to sign the bill during a visit to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. But he told reporters Friday that concerns were raised about “one person who was potentially infected” who worked at the CDC. Trump said the person has since tested negative for the new virus and that he still hopes to visit the agency at some point.
The US Senate passed the $8.3 billion measure Thursday to help tackle the outbreak in hopes of reassuring a fearful public and accelerating the government’s response to the virus. Its rapid spread is threatening to upend everyday life in the US and across the globe.