The number of students who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus at the SDM College of Medical Sciences in Dharwad has risen to 281, with 99 new cases confirmed as of the morning of Saturday, November 27. Dharwad District Commissioner Nitish Patil said out of all the students who tested positive, only six are symptomatic. According to reports, he said that 1,822 test results are awaited.
Two hostels on the premises were sealed after initially 66 medical students had tested positive. The infected students are undergoing treatment in their hostel rooms. Movement is restricted and measures are being taken to prevent infection from spreading. At least 2,500 people including students, staff and primary contacts were tested.
Dharwad Deputy Commissioner Nitesh Patil on Thursday had said a students' event might have resulted in the spread of infection. He added there was a function at the auditorium where a marriage ceremony was also held a couple of days later. Another function was held there on November 25. An appeal was made to all attendees to take COVID-19 tests. Noting that some parents had also attended the studentsâ€™ event, all parents who attended have also been asked to undergo tests.
As many as 66 students had tested positive by Thursday morning and the second phase of test results confirmed infection among 116 more, and this number rose to 204 by Friday night. All those who tested positive have been isolated, officials told PTI, adding that those infected were all fully vaccinated, and have shown very mild symptoms.
With more students testing positive, the district administration has declared holidays for all educational institutes situated around 500 meters of the college. Since students from several states study in the college, parents of 182 medical students have been advised to get themselves tested if they had met their wards last week, he explained.
"The samples are being tested at DIMHANS, KIMS and SDM labs," he added.
So far, no infection has been reported outside and surrounding areas of the college campus. The district commissioner has appealed to the people to immediately get themselves tested at the nearby Primary Health Centre in case of any symptom. "Everyone should take precautions and follow Covid guidelines," he said.
With inputs from agencies