KARACHI: All three immediate family members of the first coronavirus patient in Karachi have cleared of the highly contagious disease and put into an isolation ward where they will remain under observation for the next 15 days, a health official said on Thursday.
Dr Syed Zafar Mehdi, the Sindh government’s focal person for coronavirus, told The Express Tribune that the family has no symptoms of the novel virus but they were put into isolation as part of precautionary measures.
The patient, Y*, recently flew in to Karachi along with his family from Iran. The health department is in the process of examining all the passengers he has travelled with.
“Y* went to Iran in a group of 28 pilgrims. He has been immediately admitted to a private hospital, where he is undergoing various tests,” the provincial health minister told The Express Tribune. Medics at the hospital said Y*’s condition is improving.
Dr Zafar said the Sindh health department got database from the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) of all 1,500 passengers who have travelled to Karachi from Iran since February 1.
He said all those suspected passengers have been identified and they will be kept under observation and constant monitoring for the next 15 days. All the passengers have been asked to isolate themselves from their families.
“If they are symptomatic, testing will be done and if they tested positive they will be shifted the isolation wards,” Dr Zafar said, adding that the provincial government has a quarantine facility available.
He also said that officials are also monitoring the prices and availability of the masks and medicines, the prices of which have shot up after two cases of deadly disease reported in the country a day earlier.
“We are also ensuring the availability of masks at fair prices,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Sindh health authorities have also issued advisory to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus.
- All public places including health facilities, offices, shopping malls and others must have hand sanitiser available at all entry points of their premises.
- Medical staff working at hospitals across the province should wear gloves and masks and immediately isolate patients who have travel history from Iran, China and any country where coronavirus is prevalent.
- Standees for awareness and protective protocols should be put up in hospitals and public places.