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Six UK returnees to Kerala test positive for new strain

Six UK returnees from Kerala, including a two-year-old child, have tested positive for the new strain of the virus, Health Minister K K Shailaja said here on Monday.

“Six people who recently returned from the UK have tested positive for the new strain. We have placed them under surveillance. Their samples had been sent to NIV,Pune, and the the results were received today,” she told reporters tonight.

While two persons each from Alappuzha and Kozhikode tested positive for the new variant, Kottayam and Kannur districts reported one case each, she said.

Without revealing the names, the minister, later in a release said the two Kozhikode natives are aged 35 and two.

The two from Alappuzha are aged 30 and 36, while those from Kottayam and Kannur are aged 20 and 29 respectively.

A total of 39 UK returnees have tested positive for COVID-19 till now and their samples were sent to the National Institute of Virology, Pune.

The six fresh cases of a new strain of virus wasfrom among these 39 samples.

“The six patients are under isolation and observation,” the minister added.

Shailaja asked the people to remain cautious as the infection rate was high for the new strain of virus.

“The infection rate for the new strain of virus is veryhigh. So those who have come in contact with the infected people should identify themselves.

There is no need to worry. This can be curedif we take necessary precautions,” Shailaja said.

She said elderly people must remaincareful and urged them to practice reverse quarantine.

Reverse quarantine involves separating those who are likely to develop severe illness (vulnerable population), from the general public who are at the risk of the disease during an outbreak of an infectious disease, so that the associated mortality and morbidity can be reduced.

The minister said airports and seaports in Kerala will remain under strict vigil and those arriving in the state from European countries would be under observation.

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