Release after 3 days’ SOP and testing technique under scrutiny
[ Amar Sangno ]
ITANAGAR, Jun 2: A woman who reportedly tested negative for Covid-19 while in an institutional quarantine facility (IQF) – a paid hotel – has tested positive for the virus.
She had returned from Delhi on 18 May along with a person who tested positive, but in separate buses.
Sources said that she was sent to a paid quarantine facility after her return from Delhi.
On 20 May, her first swab sample was taken, which tested negative, and she was discharged on 23 May and advised home quarantine.
Sources divulged that she insisted that the medical team at the PTC Banderdewa IQF conduct a repeat test, and accordingly another swab sample was collected on 30 May, which tested positive.
Doctors say that the false negative result could possibly have been due to on of two reasons: “faulty method of sample collection or less viral load during the sample collection.”
It is reported that people in QFs are demanding that the doctors carry out nasal swab testing.
With the spike in Covid-19 positive cases in the state, the standard operating procedure (SOP), which allows the returnees to go for home quarantine within three days if their samples test negative, comes under serious question.
Health experts said that if greater numbers of false negatives are detected, it would be a serious cause of concern.
It is said that the SOP was modified to put returnees under home quarantine after testing negative, considering the crowded quarantine facilities.
“The decision to send returnees to home quarantine after testing negative within three days was made because of limited capacity in QFs,” said a doctor on condition of anonymity.
Sources in the health department informed that the report of the positive case in home quarantine shocked the authority, which has forced them to scramble to draft a pragmatic SOP to contain the virus from spreading into the community.
This daily could not get a response from the health department.
Covid -19 cases jump to 29
Meanwhile, five more Covid-19 positive cases were detected in the state – four in the PTC Banderdewa QF and one in Lohit district – on Tuesday. The person who tested positive in Lohit is said to be the wife of an officer in the ITBP.
All are reportedly asymptomatic.
A late night report informed that one more person has tested positive, taking the total to 29.
However, the official bulletin says that the total positive cases in Arunachal stand at 28, with 27 active cases and one discharged.
All the positive cases were sent to Covid care centres immediately after their swab samples’ results were received.
Among the new four positive cases in the capital complex, two are Delhi returnees, while one came from Mumbai, and one from Bangalore.
So far 9079 persons have been tested, while 1241 results are awaited.