India has 38 cases of ‘highly infectious’ UK Covid-19 strain. Check state wise list here

India has reported 38 cases of the new mutated strain of coronavirus, officials from the Union ministry of health and family welfare said on Monday. All those who have been infected by the new virus strain have been kept in single room isolation in designated healthcare facilities by respective state governments and their close contacts have also been put under quarantine, the ministry said.

The country had seen 29 cases of this strain – which was first found in the United Kingdom – last week.

The new variant of coronavirus disease – B.1.1.7 – has been dubbed as highly infectious by scientists and medical experts as the UK government has confirmed that the infection rates have increased faster than expected in the affected areas where the new strain has been circulating and stronger measures are required to get the virus under control.

The ministry said that from November 25 to December 23 midnight, about 33,000 passengers disembarked at various Indian airports from the UK. All these passengers are being tracked and subjected to RT-PCR tests by states and Union Territories. India took cognizance of the reports of the virus strain reported from the UK and put in place a proactive and preventive strategy to detect and contain the mutant variant, it said.

So far, Denmark, Netherlands, Australia, Italy, Sweden, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Japan, Lebanon and Singapore have reported the presence of the UK variant genome.

Here are the states which have reported cases of the new strain:

1. Karnataka: The health ministry has confirmed that ten infected patients are admitted at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru and are undergoing the treatment for the viral contagion.

2. Andhra Pradesh: Of the 38 cases, three are admitted at the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, officials said. Last week, a 47-year-old woman, who returned to Rajamahendravaram in Andhra Pradesh on December 23, was found to have contracted the new mutated strain of coronavirus but the state health department maintained that there was no spread of the fresh strain in AP. Of the 12 UK-returned passengers who tested positive for Covid-19, only this woman had the new strain, state health commissioner Katamaneni Bhaskar said, citing a report of the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology in Hyderabad. The woman’s son has tested negative.

3. Maharashtra: At least five cases of the 70% more infectious virus have surfaced in Maharashtra’s Pune, the National Institute of Virology confirmed. As many as eight returnees to Maharashtra from the UK have been found to be infected with the new Covid-19 variant detected in the European country, health minister Rajesh Tope said on Monday. Of these, five are from Mumbai, he said, adding contacts of all the Covid-19 patients with the UK strain are being traced. Out of the eight, five are from Mumbai and one each from Pune, Thane and Mira Bhayandar. The contact tracing of these patients is going on, the minister said.

4. Delhi: Among the most affected by the strain, the national capital has 19 cases of the mutated virus, which include seven residents, an official from Delhi government said. The government has tested 51 people, including those who recently returned from the UK and their contacts, have so far tested positive for Covid-19 and all have been kept in a separate isolation facility at Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital (LNJP) Hospital.

5. West Bengal: Kolkata has seen one case of the mutated virus, the health ministry data showed. West Bengal had reported its first case of a mutant coronavirus strain that surfaced in the UK last week on Wednesday. The patient, the son of a senior official of the state health department, tested positive for the variant of the mutant coronavirus strain after returning from London 10 days ago, the official said. The patient is being treated at NCBG in Kolkata, the ministry said.

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