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Center issues new notice to states, Uts on new variant of Covid

The Center on Thursday called on all states and union territories to conduct rigorous screening and testing of all international travelers arriving or transiting through South Africa, Hong Kong and Botswana, where a new COVID-19 variant with serious public health implications has been reported.

In a letter to the Additional Chief Secretary / Principal Secretary / Secretary (Health) of all States and Union Territories, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan called on them to ensure that Traveler samples that have become positive be sent promptly to designated genome sequencing laboratories.

It has now been reported by the National Center for Disease Control (NCDC) that several cases of a variant of COVID-19 B.1.1529 have been reported in Botswana (3 cases), South Africa (6 cases) and Hong Kong (1 case), Bhushan said in the letter.

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“This variant would have a significantly high number of mutations and would therefore have serious implications for the country’s public health, given the recently relaxed visa restrictions and the opening of international travel.”

“It is therefore imperative that all international travelers traveling from and passing through these countries (they are part of the category of countries” at risk “of international travelers coming to India) and also including all other countries at risk indicated in the version revised The guidelines for international arrivals issued by this ministry as of November 11, 2021, are subject to rigorous screening and testing, in accordance with MoHFW guidelines, ”Bhushan said.

The contacts of these international travelers should also be closely monitored and tested in accordance with MoHFW guidelines.

First publication: STI


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