Test all returnees from red zones, AMK appeals

Kohima, May 23 (MExN): The Angamimiapfü Mechü Krotho (AMK), the apex Angami women body, on Saturday submitted a representation to the Department of Health and Family Welfare (H&FW), requesting that it test all the returnees, especially those coming from red zones to the state. 

In the representation addressed to the Principal Secretary, H&FW, the AMK acknowledged the government authorities and various state government agencies for bringing stranded citizens home, but however, expressed concern that the virus could enter the state “if necessary measures are not taken to contain the disease.”

It said that the neighboring states such as Meghalaya and Manipur have been known to test all their citizens returning from the red zones and suggested that the same be done in Nagaland. “In our context, the fact that Dimapur and Kohima are being made the portal of entry to the various other districts of Nagaland, it is only prudent that all incoming returnees are tested at these portals and only COVID negative be sent to the rest of the districts so as to limit the spread of COVID if any,” it stated. It reasoned that testing “can limit the spread of the disease by early identification, isolation and treatment, thereby reducing the infective load, affected case and thereby saving costs, labors and fatalities in the long run.”

“Should any untested asymptomatic COVID-19 positive patient be sent to other part of the State resulting in community spread, the subsequent cost of testing and treatment of contacts could become explosively overwhelming and prohibitory in terms of both manpower and financial costs apart from loss of lives,” the AMK stated. As such, it urged that the Government of Nagaland and the Department of Health and Family Welfare to take all necessary steps and measures to test all the returnees so as to detect the disease in early and asymptomatic stages and thus, safeguard the people of Nagaland.