India’s first novel coronavirus patient in Kerala is now in a stable condition and recovering, media reports said on Monday. This came days after Kerala withdrew the “state calamity” alert it had issued last week following three positive tests.
The woman has been undergoing treatment at Thrissur Medical College since January 30. She had come back to the country from the Chinese city of Wuhan, which is the epicentre of the outbreak. One of her swab samples sent for testing at the virology institute in the state’s Alappuzha district has come back negative, The Indian Express quoted an unidentified state health official as saying.
“But we need confirmation from the NIV [National Institute of Virology] in Pune,” a senior medical officer told PTI. She will be discharged if a third sample is negative.
Earlier, the state health department had said the number of people in isolation wards of various hospitals had come down to 34. “A total of 3,252 are still under observation across the state, of which 3,218 are under home quarantine,” the government said in a press release. The other two patients who tested positive for the virus are undergoing treatment in Alappuzha, and the Kanhangad District Hospital in Kasaragod.
In Maharashtra, 34 of the 37 people admitted to isolation wards for suspected exposure to the virus were discharged after their samples tested negative, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope said on Monday, PTI reported.
China thanks Modi
Meanwhile, China thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his letter to President Xi Jinping offering solidarity and assistance to deal with the epidemic. Beijing said the letter “fully demonstrated” its friendship with New Delhi.
“We thank and appreciate India’s support for China’s fight against the NCP [novel coronavirus pneumonia],” said the Chinese foreign ministry. “India’s acts of goodwill fully demonstrate its people’s friendship with the Chinese people. We stand ready to work with India and other members of the international community to jointly fight the epidemic and safeguard regional and global public health security.”
The novel coronavirus originated in a live seafood market in Wuhan in December, and initial reports of the epidemic emerged last month. It has killed 910 people so far, all but two of them in mainland China. The virus causes respiratory illness, and is similar to the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, which had killed 774 people globally between 2002 and 2003 after emerging from China. The coronavirus’ symptoms can include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.