Amid Rising Trend In Kerala, COVID Sub-Variant Detected In 79-Year-Old Woman

Kochi: A COVID-19 variant was detected recently amid a rising trend of coronavirus cases in Kerala.

Four COVID patients died in the southern state on Saturday, and 1,144 active cases were detected on Sunday.

A 79-year-old woman from Karakulam in Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram had tested positive for coronavirus on November 18. The sample, sent for genome sequencing as part of routine surveillance of Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG), was found to be positive for COVID sub-variant JN.1 on December 8.

The woman, who had mild symptoms of influenza like illness (ILI), has recovered from COVID.

The Union Health Ministry advised mock drills at all health facilities across states to assess public health and hospital preparedness in case of another emergency.

A government press release stated that the Union Health Ministry is in touch with state health authorities and monitoring the situation.

“There has been an increasing trend of COVID cases from Kerala in the last few weeks. This has been attributed to an increase in several samples from ILI cases being referred for testing. A majority of these cases are clinically mild and recovering on their own at their homes without any treatment,” stated a government press release.

The Health department is monitoring different entry points to Kerala.

As per revised COVID surveillance guidelines, patients of ILI and SARI are tested for viral disease with the positive cases being referred for whole genome sequencing (WGS).

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