Chennai Buzz: Frontline workers to be tested | Improved Class XII results in GCC schools | Dengue cases raise alarm…and more

Latest updates on the COVID-19 front in the city and news of other developments during the week that went by.

COVID-19: Antibody testing for frontline workers, COVID-19 test for all inmates of IMH

On July 17th, Chennai recorded 1,329 fresh COVID-19 cases taking the total to 83,377. There were 1,329 recoveries and 36 deaths. A total of 14,923 patients are under treatment in the city’s various hospitals and COVID Care Centers. It is to be noted that 65,748 patients have recovered from the disease. 

Zone-wise growth rate of new cases under the limits of Greater Chennai Corporation, for the last 7 days till July 17. Pic: GCC/Twitter

The Greater Chennai Corporation has begun antibody testing for the frontline workers including sanitary workers, fever survey staff, volunteers and doctors. While RT-PCR method is the standard accepted across the world, antibody testing gives quicker results. 

In view of the rising death rates among COVID patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), health officials in Valasaravakkam Zone (Zone 11) have decided to conduct a renal function test for patients, especially senior citizens, who test positive at the screening centre. This will help them identify the presence of a key co-morbid condition, that is CKD. Across the city, 12 screening centres are present to identify co-morbid conditions if a person tests positive.  

Overall zone-wise detailed status of COVID-19 cases in Chennai. Pic: GCC/Twitter

While hearing the petition filed by the Tamil Nadu Association for the Rights of All Types of Differently Abled and Caregivers (TARATDAC), the Madras High Court issued a direction to test the 800 inmates at the Institute of Mental Health, Kilpauk including the staff, within a week. The number of cases in the institution continued to rise in early June due to selective testing.

The civic body, Greater Chennai Police and officials of the Fisheries Department are planning to implement strategies to control the crowd at the Kasimedu fish market. The representatives of the fishing associations have been warned that the harbour would be sealed if social distancing norms were found to be breached.

Source: The Hindu | The Times of India | The New Indian Express

Endemic and pandemic worries healthcare workers

As Chennai continues its battle with COVID-19 with all the available resources, the identification of five dengue cases in Zone 5 Royapuram in the past week is worrying. Residents of Old Washermenpet, Tondiarpet, Royapuram and Kodambakkam and some other areas have been complaining of increasing mosquito menace, following which all 3,500 domestic breeding checkers have been shifted from COVID duty to vector control work.

There is apprehension that the similarity between symptoms of COVID-19 and dengue could increase the risk of erroneous diagnosis. It also places greater burden on the already overstressed hospital infrastructure in the city.

Source: The New Indian Express

11 Corporation schools show improvement in Class XII results

Corporation Schools in Chennai have recorded 85.8% pass percentage in the Plus Two Board Examinations. Among the schools, 21 institutions have witnessed a downturn in the overall results, while 11 schools fared better than the previous year. Chennai Corporation Higher Secondary School in West Mambalam recorded 100% results. The pass percentage among girls is 90% and among boys is 78%.

Source: The Hindu

Committee directed to take stock of Narayanapuram lake

In a bid to identify if the Narayanapuram lake in Pallikaranai is encroached, the southern bench of the National Green Tribunal has directed a joint committee to come up with solutions for preserving the waterbody. The issue was heard by Justice K Ramakrishnan and expert member Saibal Dasgupta.

The joint committee has also been directed to assess the total area of the water body by verifying the revenue records and conducting tests to examine the lake’s water quality. If found to be contaminated, the joint committee has been asked to identify the contamination sources and lay down measures for the restoration of the water body.

Source: The Hindu

Compiled by Bhavani Prabhakar

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