Omicron scare:Agra hotels on alert as new corona variant poses global threat

In the wake of the global threat posed by the novel coronavirus variant present in South Africa, health officials sounded an alarm in Agra on Saturday. Letters are issued to hotels in Taj to monitor visitors from South Africa, Botswana and Hong Kong.

Although new cases of Covid-19 are minimal in Uttar Pradesh, there are threats being raised globally due to the new Sars-CoV-2 variant, Omicron, which has been traced in South Africa and is officially known as B. 1.1. 529. Dr. AK Srivastava, Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Agra said:

It was Agra who recorded the first case of Covid-19 virus in Uttar Pradesh on March 2, 2020. The city, which has three monuments included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, attracts many tourists. Although international flights are not yet operating, the Agra administration and health officials are not willing to take the risk.

“With a global threat looming large with the new variant being tracked, precautionary steps are being rolled out. Letters are being written to hotels in Agra stating that information is provided on any visitors coming from South Africa, Botswana and Hong Kong. Extensive monitoring is needed for these guests until they stay Here at Agra.”

“In a meeting, Agra District Judge Prabhu N Singh directed that those coming from these countries be closely monitored, along with those they come into contact with. We also have to monitor those who have recently traveled to these countries or hold passports of these countries. They are asked to inform the Ministry of Health immediately.”

Meanwhile, health authorities are reviewing health infrastructure in rural areas because the hospitalization burden during the second wave has strained urban facilities. As such, the idea is to strengthen hospitals in community health centers in the rural belt, especially where oxygen stations and bed availability have been set up so that the burden on city hospitals is eased.

“Health infrastructure is being upgraded at District Hospital and SN Medical College in Agra. Mock drills are being conducted and oxygen stations are checked for greater output if needed. Visitor monitoring has also been extended at the Taj Mahal.”

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