Published: 09th May 2022
Emerging COVID clusters in college hostels of Tamil Nadu are a cause of concern
Regarding the development, Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan told TNIE that when such clusters start to emerge, multi-level supervision is the need of the hour
COVID-19 clusters in college hostels are emerging as a concern for health department officials and are posing a challenge to them. Clusters in the Indian Institute of Technology - Madras (IIT Madras) and in Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute have taken Tamil Nadu's caseload up by a notch.
On Saturday, May 7, Tamil Nadu reported 89 cases, after 42 people tested positive at Shri Sathya Sai Medical College. This emerged when a saturation test was held there. On Sunday, May 9, only three tested positive.
Director of Public Health TS Selvavinayagam said most institutions failed to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour. "We can prevent clusters from emerging if people are vaccinated and follow COVID appropriate behaviour," said Dr T S Selvavinayagam, Director of Public Health.
Regarding the development, Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan told TNIE that when such clusters start to emerge, multi-level supervision is the need of the hour. Radhakrishnan, via a message, instructed collectors and health officials to keep a track of students with travel history, especially those who have either come from other states or participated in any cultural or sports/academic inter-state meets.
Radhakrishnan even went on to instruct officials to check for symptomatic people and carry out contact tracing. "Saturation tests should be held in case of clusters. Isolate and treat positive cases, preferably in isolation facilities, within the campus," the health secretary said. He asked the officials to ensure that eligible people are vaccinated in special vaccination camps.
As per public health experts, immunity as a result of vaccination and immunity developed after exposure to COVID-19 infection led to the state having about 88 per cent seropositivity, Radhakrishnan said.
In some other news, Tamil Nadu vaccinated 17,02,429 people in the mega COVID-19 vaccination camp held on Sunday, according to health department data. The first dose was administered to 3,43,308, the second dose to 12,61,553, and the precautionary dose to 97,568.