33 more cases of Omicron variant in Tamil Nadu

With this, the State has a total of 34 confirmed cases of the variant.

Samples of 33 persons, which included international travellers and their contacts, have tested positive for Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 in Tamil Nadu. With this, the State has a total of 34 confirmed cases of Omicron variant, Health Minister Ma. Subramanian said on Thursday, December 23, 2021.

Earlier, whole genome sequencing confirmed that the sample of a person who had travelled from Nigeria to Chennai via Doha was that of Omicron variant. All 34 persons were already in hospital isolation and were being monitored, he told reporters.

Also read: Omicron variant: Isolation ward ready

As of date, all 15,259 travellers from 12 countries at-risk were tested in the State. Of the 1,00,950 persons who travelled from non-risk countries, two per cent of them — 2,870 persons, were tested randomly. In total, 18,129 persons were tested of which 114 were found positive for COVID-19, he said.

“Of this, the State Public Health Laboratory identified S-gene dropout in 57 samples. All samples were sent to INSACOG laboratories for confirmation,” he said.

The Minister said that the National Institute of Virology, Pune had sent the results on Wednesday night. “With one person already found to be infected with Omicron variant, the samples of 33 persons were confirmed to be of Omicron variant,” he said.

The results of 23 samples were awaited, he said. Except for two children, all remaining patients were vaccinated, the Minister said.

Health Secretary J. Radhakrishnan said, “A total of 45 persons who returned from 21 countries had tested positive on arrival at the entry point on the first day. This included travellers from nine at-risk and 12 non-risk countries. On the eighth day, when we tested again, 48 persons tested positive for COVID-19. We traced a total of 4,835 contacts of which 21 persons were found to be positive for the infection. A total of 114 persons tested positive for COVID-19 of which 23 recovered,” he explained.

As of date, 79 persons were admitted to government hospitals, 12 in private hospitals, while 23 were discharged.

All 34 persons, who tested positive for the Omicron variant, were already brought under a four-tier safety circle, he said. All district Collectors were told to tighten surveillance including on super-spreading areas, he said.

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