A second person has tested positive for the novel coronavirus infection in India. This case, like the first one, was also reported in Kerala, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said on Sunday morning.
The patient, who had a history of travel to China, has been kept in isolation, the ministry said. The patient is in a stable condition and is being monitored.
However, Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja said that the state was awaiting results from the National Institute of Virology before confirming the second positive case, PTI reported. “We have been informed telephonically by NIV Pune that there is a possibility of another positive case,” she told the media. “We are yet to receive the results. The suspected case is of a student of Wuhan university.”
Shailaja said the student returned from Wuhan to India on January 24, and is currently in an isolation ward at the Alappuzha Medical College Hospital. “The patient has minor symptoms,” she said. “But we are not taking any chances. We have taken proper precautions even though we have not received any confirmation. We expect the results by evening.”
India reported its first positive case of novel coronavirus infection on January 30. The patient was a student at Wuhan University, a resident of Thrissur, and is now in isolation in a hospital in Kerala. Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja said later in the week that the patient is now in a stable condition.
At least 304 people have died so far in China, most of them in Hubei province, the epicentre of the outbreak, while 14,380 people have been infected. The virus has spread to 23 countries, including India. The first death outside China was reported in the Philippines on Saturday. Several countries have banned flights to and from China, restricted travel, and in some cases, closed their borders with the country.
Meanwhile, a second special Air India flight carrying 330 passengers – 323 Indians and seven Maldivians – from Wuhan landed in Delhi on Sunday morning, PTI reported. The first flight, which evacuated 324 Indians, had landed in New Delhi on Saturday.
Four Indians could not board the second flight as they reported high temperatures.