Three new cases of coronavirus infection were detected in Maharashtra on Friday, taking the number of confirmed cases in the state to 52, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope said here.
The new cases came to light in Mumbai, Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad. The Minister, meanwhile, promised that the number of coronavirus testing facilities will be doubled to 12 in the next ten days.
“With three new cases, the number of (Covid-19) patients increased to 52,” he said.
As per the health department’s statement on Thursday evening, Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation area near Pune had 11 confirmed patients, Mumbai nine and Pune city eight.
Meanwhile, Tope informed that five persons who had tested positive for the infection in the state earlier would be discharged on Friday as their fresh tests came out negative. “This means that these patients are recovering,” the Minister pointed out.
The state government will bear the entire cost of treatment of all coronavirus patients under the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Aroygya Yojana, he said.
A large proportion of the 1,036 persons admitted to isolation facilities in Maharashtra so far on suspicion of being infected with the virus have tested negative, the Minister said.
“Even with symptoms and travel history (to countries where the outbreak of the epidemic is serious), 971 travellers tested negative,” he said.
However, considering the spread of the epidemic, people should extend full support to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal for a `Janata Curfew’ by staying indoors on March 22, the Minister added.
Tope also assured that in the next ten days, the number of coronavirus test centres in the state will be increased to 12 from existing six with the capacity to examine 2,300 samples.
He also said that the government has made adequate arrangement to quarantine over 20,000 Indian nationals who are likely to be evacuated from the Gulf countries.
Only those who test negative for the virus will be airlifted from foreign countries by the civil aviation ministry, he added.
Tope also appealed that the people who have been put in-home quarantine and whose hands have been stamped (to identify them as such) should not use public transport and travel only by private vehicles.