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Coronavirus Outbreak: Domestic help tests positive; BMC officials in dilemma as COVID 19 reaches Mumbai slums

BMC officials are worried as a domestic help test positive for COVID 19 in a Mumbai slum. Read on.
Coronavirus Outbreak: Domestic help tests positive; BMC officials in dilemma as COVID 19 reaches Mumbai slumsCoronavirus Outbreak: Domestic help tests positive; BMC officials in dilemma as COVID 19 reaches Mumbai slums
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The biggest hurdle faced globally as we fight coronavirus pandemic is crowd as the virus is contagious. While places with small populations are still in an advantage, India being the most populated country, it is a challenge for the Governments to ensure citizens stay isolated. Amid this, if even person tests positive in slum areas (half of the population in Mumbai), officials are on red alert. A 68-year-old domestic help recently tested positive for COVID 19 (coronavirus) in Mumbai, which left the Brihan Mumbai Corporation (BMC) officials worrying. Coronavirus cases in Mumbai have risen too in the last few days. 

When the officials reached the doors of the woman to ensure her family members go through the test as well, her son's question, "How can we get it, why are you here to test us… because we are poor and live in slums?" left them worried. It took the officials some time to convince him and explain why it is extremely paramount for him to get tested. This first case in a slum has left the officials worried given that over 23 thousand people live in a small space here. 

As soon as the case came to light, the officials managed to trace the people the help met in the last 10 days but it is posing a bigger challenge to trace each woman who must have used the public washroom the 68-year woman used in the last 10 days. The officials are only hoping that no one gets infected. 

Indian Express quoted, Dr Avdhoot Kanchan, a BMC official, saying the woman was not allowed to use cellphone in an isolation ward, as Kasturba hospital staff feared if the phone was given to her son, the infection would transmit outside. “When Kasturba doctors asked her who her close contacts were, she couldn’t reply properly. She was scared, didn’t understand what was happening, we think,” Kanchan said.

“The challenge is to make them understand home quarantine without spreading panic in the slum,” said Dr Bhupendra Patil, the ward medical officer. “We spoke with neighbours to check if they saw the woman with anyone. They gave a few names. The contact tracing process is on.”

However, by Friday night, the civic staffers were a bit relieved as none of the nine close contacts of the help (As informed by her son) had tested positive. “The chances of the virus spreading beyond are slim if these people tested negative,” hopes Suresh Kakani, additional municipal corporation, BMC.

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