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Nagaland Govt. mishandling of COVID-19 crisis exposed


1 tested positive from 169 returnees sent to Tuensang from Kohima

DIMAPUR, MAY 27: In what could be considered as utter mismanagement, bordering on criminal negligence, in the handling of COVID-19 cases in Nagaland by the State authorities, a COVID-19 patient was sent to Tuensang along with 169 passengers from Kohima Tuesday afternoon thereby risking the lives of many.

As per reports, around 169 passengers quarantined in Kohima since May 22 last were sent packing to Tuensang by State authorities in five buses without waiting for results of their samples.

The complacency of the authorities in handling suspected COVID-19 cases, however, was exposed when the results of one of the Tuensang-bound passengers returned positive. But by that time, the patient along with his 168 co-passengers had already reached Tuensang.

Sources said samples of all the passengers were taken at Naga Hospital Authority Kohima (NHAK) on Tuesday, and they were sent home before the results came back. Sources claimed that the COVID-19 patient was asymptomatic and that his samples were taken on Tuesday, but before the test results came back he was sent home.

According to reports, the COVID-19 patient is now admitted at Tuensang COVID-19 Hospital.

The State authorities must own responsibility for the negligence, as well as give reasons behind the hastiness in sending the Tuensang-bound returnees on Tuesday without waiting for the results of their samples, which has now endangered many.

Interestingly in what appears to be an attempt to hide facts, Nagaland Health & Family Welfare Minister, Pangnyu Phom in his tweet announcing the detection of five more positive cases in Nagaland failed to mention that one of the active cases is in Tuensang.

Sources said the 169 returnees who have reached Tuensang will not be sent to their respective villages/homes but kept in quarantine centres at Tuensang.

It has also been confirmed that none from the quarantine centres at Tuensang had run away. Earlier there were rumours that three persons had run away from these centres.

Meanwhile, DC Tuensang Kumar Ramnikant, IAS, has informed that five buses carrying 151 persons (returnees from Chennai) from Kohima reached Sao Chang College Quarantine Centre, Tuensang at 4:45 AM and were admitted after necessary procedures were followed.

In a release, the DC stated that the samples of the returnees for COVID-I9 testing were taken at Kohima before being sent to Tuensang and the results were awaited. Upon receiving the results at 7 AM from the State Nodal Officer, IDSP, Kohima and on the report of a person being tested positive, consequently, the person was isolated at the quarantine centre and the District Hospital, Tuensang was activated as a COVID Hospital by shifting the regular patients to Urban Primary Health Centre, PHC Longpang and Polyclinic.

The person was then shifted to the COVID Hospital isolation ward and is being monitored as per the SOP.  The Sao Chang College quarantine centre has also been declared as containment zone.

As per the latest report, the person is stated to be asymptomatic and in a stable condition. More test results are awaited. (Page News Service)