Fear of Omicron: City of Agra to Filter Visitors with Recent History of Overseas Touring | Agra News


Agra: Following reports of the detection of a new variant of the coronavirus (B.1.1.529, renamed Omicron) in South Africa, Botswana, Hong Kong, Israel and Belgium, the health service of Agra district sounded the alarm to check visitors from these countries, who come to see the Taj Mahal as well as for business with shoe and carpet makers.
According to health experts, the Omicron spreads faster than the Delta, another variant of the coronavirus. It has more than 30 mutations, more than any other variant, and experts fear it may be vaccine resistant.
Given the scenario that has prompted countries like the United States to ban travel to African countries, the health department here is bracing for any eventuality as the city of Agra witnesses a huge influx of foreign and national visitors, especially in winter.
Dr Arun Kumar Srivastava, Chief Medical Officer of Agra District, said: “Four rapid response teams have been formed to collect information on people who have recently traveled to foreign countries. All these people will be screened by doctors and they will have to undergo an RT-PCR test eight days after their arrival. We will also vaccinate those screened if they have not received a dose. Hotel associations have been asked to report people with recent travel history. All hospitals have also been urged to prepare to prevent the spread of the new variant of Covid-19.
The CMO added: “So far the majority of people tested with the Omicron variant have been asymptomatic. Therefore, we will need to carry out medical surveillance of people with a recent travel history for at least 14 days. Those who show symptoms will be isolated. Arrangements are being made in this regard, ”said the CMO.
The Department of Health on Saturday released two contact numbers – 0562-2600418 and 2600508 – for information on people with a history of overseas travel.
The last case of Covid-19 in Agra was reported on November 20. A 50-year-old representative from a shoe company, who had visited Poland, is the only active Covid-19 case in the district. The health department had sent the human samples for genome sequencing. The lab report is awaited, the CMO said.



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