Sat, 20 Aug 2022

Gandhinagar (Gujarat) [India], December 4 (ANI): Following the discovery of the first case of the new Omicron variant of COVID-19 in Gujarat's Jamnagar, Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel reviewed the readiness of the state health system against this new variant at a high-level meeting, informed the Chief Minister's Office on Saturday.

He gave clear instructions to proceed with the strategy of tracing, testing and treatment in positive cases, added the CMO.

Apart from 11 high-risk countries, testing is done for all travellers coming to Gujarat from all the at-risk countries of Europe-other not-at-risk countries, as per the CMO. More than 4500 people have been screened since December 1, said the CMO.

The Additional Chief Secretary of Health informed the Chief Minister that screening and testing operations have been intensified at all the airports in the world as per the instructions of the Government of India following the introduction of a new variant of Covid-19, Omicron.

The Chief Minister has also appealed to all citizens to use social distance, masks and sanitation to the fullest, urging them to be vigilant and cautious even in the context of this new variant.

The Chief Minister instructed the officials in this meeting to strictly implement the new guidelines issued by the Government of India regarding the Omicron variant in the state.

Minister of Health Hrishikesh Bhai Patel and Minister of State for Home Affairs Harsh Sanghvi joined this high-level meeting by video conference.

In this meeting, Chief Minister Senior officials including Kailashnathan, Chief Secretary Pankaj Kumar, Additional Chief Secretary of Health Department Manoj Agarwal were also present.

Earlier on Saturday, Gujarat reported its first case of new COVID 19 variant Omicron in Jamnagar, informed the state's health department.

"A person who came from Zimbabwe was infected with Omicron. His sample has been sent to Pune," an official said.

This is the third case of the Omicron variant in the country. The first cases of Omicron were reported in Karnataka.

A new variant of COVID-19 was first reported to the World Health Organisation (WHO) from South Africa on November 25. As per the WHO, the first known confirmed B.1.1.529 infection was from a specimen collected on November 9 this year.

On November 26, the WHO named the new COVID-19 variant B.1.1.529, which has been detected in South Africa, as 'Omicron'. The WHO has classified Omicron as a 'variant of concern'. (ANI)

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