New Delhi /Dec, 12 : The number of Omicron patients in India ticked up to 35 as two more cases were on Sunday detected — one in Chandigarh and another in Andhra Pradesh. For both states, these were the first cases.
A 20-year-old who came from Italy to visit his relatives in Chandigarh, tested positive for Omicron. After landing on November 22, he was on home quarantine and tested positive for Covid on retesting on December 1. A genome sequencing confirmed Omicron.
The man, who was completely asymptomatic, got fully vaccinated with Pfizer vaccine while in Italy. He is currently in institutional quarantine. His seven high risk family contacts have been placed in quarantine too. All of them tested negative for Covid in RTPCR test. They were tested again today. In Andhra Pradesh, a man who returned from Ireland tested positive for the Omicron strain, which has raised concerns of a fresh outbreak across the world. States including Delhi, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Gujarat have reported cases of the new COVID-19 variant. Maharashtra has seen the maximum number of cases. “A new variant doesn’t mean that things will be worse, but definitely, they will be more uncertain,” World Health Organisation Regional Director for South East Asia, Dr Poonam Khetrapal, told a national news channel . “In the South Asia region, we must not let out guard down. We must continue to strengthen surveillance, public health, and social measures, and rapidly scale up vaccination coverage,” Dr Khetrapal said. The Indian Council of Medical Research’s unit in Assam has developed a new testing kit that can detect Omicron variant in two hours. This is expected to be a great relief to travellers, who are struggling due to the increased wait time for test reports at Airports. The Omicron strain, said to be “highly transmissible”, has spread to at least 59 nations. Last week, the World Health Organisation warned nations in the Asia-Pacific region to boost healthcare capacity and fully vaccinate their people to prepare for a surge.