COVID-19 | MoS Muraleedharan goes on self-quarantine

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A doctor tested positive after participating in a meeting attended by the Minister

Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs and External Affairs V. Muraleedharan, who attended a meeting at the Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology on March 14, has gone into self-quarantine on his own after it emerged that one of the doctors at the institute had tested positive for COVID-19.

Mr. Muraleedharan had attended the meeting in which the Director as well as several senior doctors and senior administrative officials had taken part.

On March 15, tests had confirmed that one of their doctors, who had returned from Spain after higher studies, was positive for COVID-19.

It then emerged that the doctor, who returned from Spain on March 1 and was asymptomatic, had been working in the hospital for several days, before he was finally advised to go on quarantine on March 12.

All patient-care activities at SCTIMST, except serious emergency surgeries, have been grounded for two weeks as 76 of its employees, including 43 doctors, nurses and medical technicians have all been put on quarantine by authorities.

The district administration is currently working hard to trace all persons whom the doctor might have come into contact with. Efforts are also on to trace the passengers who had travelled on the same aircraft as him from Doha, which reached Thiruvananthapuram early on March 2.

It was in this backdrop that concerns were raised about the meeting held at the institute. While it is not clear if the doctor who tested positive had attended the meeting (the doctor had been advised home quarantine from March 12), Mr. Muraleedharan seems to have gone on self-quarantine as a preventive measure, even though he reportedly does not have any symptoms.

Sources also said that the Minister’s office has sought an explanation from SCTIMST authorities on why the matter was not brought up before the meeting.

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