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COVID-19 new strain: India reports 38 cases of UK virus

COVID-19 new strain: India reports 38 cases of UK virus

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COVID-19 new strain: India reports 38 cases of UK virus COVID-19 new strain: India reports 38 cases of UK virus

NEW DELHI: The Union Ministry on Monday said that a total of 38 people in India have been tested positive for the new UK variant of COVID-19 so far. These cases include the 29 infections reported till Friday.

The health ministry informed that all these people have been kept in a single isolation room in designated healthcare facilities by respective state governments and their close contacts have also been put under quarantine.

Of the 38, the mutated UK COVID-19 strain was detected in eight samples at National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), New Delhi, 11 in the Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB), Delhi, one in the National Institute of Biomedical Genomics (NIBMG), Kalyani (near Kolkata), five in the National Institute of Virology in Pune, three in Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) in Hyderabad and 10 were sequenced at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences Hospital (NIMHANS), Bengaluru. The NCBS, InSTEM in Bengaluru, CDFD in Hyderabad, ILS in Bhubaneswar and NCCS in Pune have so far found no UK mutant virus, the ministry said.

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It said comprehensive contact tracing has been initiated for co-travellers, family contacts and others.Genome sequencing on other specimens is going on, it added.

The presence of the new UK variant has already been reported by Denmark, Netherlands, Australia, Italy, Sweden, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Japan, Lebanon, and Singapore.

Meanwhile, the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) on Sunday approved Serum Institute of India's 'Covishield' vaccine and Bharat Biotech's 'Covaxin' for emergency use. The vaccine will be first offered to one crore healthcare worker, along with two crore frontline and essential workers and 27 crores elderly, mostly above the age of 50 years with co-morbidities, according to the official statement.

The expert panel has recommended granting permission for restricted emergency use of 'Covaxin' in "public interest as an abundant precaution, in clinical trial mode, especially in the context of infection by mutant strains.

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