Two from Kenya, Somalia test positive for Omicron in Hyderabad

 

by IANS | Thu, Dec 16, 2021, 01:15 PM

Hyderabad, Dec (IANS) Two persons from Kenya and Somalia have tested positive for Omicron on Wednesday, three days after they arrived in Hyderabad while three more passengers from "at risk" countries have tested positive for Covid-19.

The samples of the three fliers have been sent for genome sequencing to find out if they are infected by Omicron, the new variant of Covid. In all, the health authorities were waiting for genome sequencing results of six passengers.

A total of 1,248 passengers from "at risk" countries arrived at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport on Wednesday. Of them, three tested positive for Covid-19.

Out of 6,644 passengers who have arrived since December 1, 21 have tested positive for Covid. The genome sequencing reports of 15 of them were negative for Omicron while results of remaining six passengers are awaited, said Director General of Public Health, Dr G. Srinivasa Rao.

While no case of Omicron was detected among passengers from "at risk" countries, the authorities found two Omicron cases among passengers arriving from other countries.

Srinivasa Rao announced earlier in the day that a passenger each from Kenya and Somalia tested positive for Omicron.

Both had arrived on December 12 via Abu Dhabi and Qatar. A 24-year-old female had arrived from Kenya while a 23-year-old had come from Somalia.

The cases were detected among two per cent tests being conducted randomly on passengers arriving from non risk countries. Both had tested positive for Covid on arrival but they were allowed to go home as per the guidelines for passengers from non risk countries. However, their samples were sent for genome sequencing and reports received Tuesday night showed them to be positive for Omicron.

The Kenyan national was immediately isolated at the Telangana Institute of Medical Sciences (TIMS) but the Somalian was reported missing. Later, the authorities also traced him and sent him to TIMS for isolation.

Srinivasa Rao said two close contacts of the Kenyan national were sent for Covid-19 tests and officials were in the process of identifying contacts of the Somlaian for further testing.

Both the Africans were residing in the Toli Chowki area in the city. "All the foreign nationals residing in that area will be screened for Covid," he said.

He also revealed that a seven-year-old boy who had landed at Hyderabad Airport along with family and later left for Kolkata also tested positive for Omicron. "We have informed the Health Department of West Bengal," he said.

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