7 ITBP personnel among 52 fresh COVID-19 cases in Arunachal, tally rises to 543

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Fifty-two more people, including seven ITBP personnel, tested positive for COVID-19 in Arunachal Pradesh on Friday, taking the state”s tally to 543, a health department official said.

Of the new cases, 42 were reported in the Capital Complex region, seven in East Siang district and three in Upper Subansiri, State Surveillance Officer Dr L Jampa said.

“The detection of 52 patients is the second-highest single-day spike of COVID-19 cases in Arunachal Pradesh as 75 people had tested positive for the disease on July 15,” he said.

Seven Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel, deployed at the Advance Landing Ground (ALG) at Pasighat, the East Siang district headquarters, were diagnosed with COVID-19, he said.

Of the fresh patients found in the Capital Complex, two had returned to the state recently and 40 were detected from various areas of the region.

The Capital Complex comprises Itanagar, Naharlagun, Nirjuli and Banderdewa areas.

The three new patients from Upper Subansiri district are also returnees, Jampa said.

All barring seven fresh patients were asymptomatic and they have been admitted to COVID Care Centres, he said.

The Capital Complex has so far registered 247 cases, the highest in the state, followed by Changlang (33), Namsai (30), East Siang (19), West Kameng (12) and Lower Subansiri (12).

The state government had imposed a total lockdown in the Capital Complex region till July 20 to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease.

Any decision to extend the lockdown in the region will be taken after a cabinet meeting slated to be held during the day.

Arunachal Pradesh has now 387 active cases, while 153 people have recovered from the disease and three died of it.

A total of 35,430 samples have been tested in the state so far, he said.

The state government had on Thursday announced that it will launch an extensive sero-survey in the Capital Complex region for the primary and secondary contacts of COVID-19 patients, including vulnerable groups.

A sero-survey involves testing of blood serum of a group of individuals for the presence of antibodies against that infection to know who has been infected in the past and has now recovered.

The rapid antigen tests began last week in the Capital Complex after the government witnessed a spurt in COVID-19 cases, Health Secretary P Parthiban said.

The authorities have so far conducted 968 antigen and 1,867 ELISA tests in the areas.

The health department will conduct more such tests and rapid response teams have already been formed for the purpose, Parthiban said.

Arunachal Pradesh had remained virus-free till May 23. It witnessed a spurt in COVID-19 cases after residents of the state started returning from other parts of the country.

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