Several Calcuttans are calling up the police and the state government helpline complaining that their neighbours who have returned from countries most affected by Covid-19 were flouting the advisory and moving around, instead of being in home quarantine.
A doctor and his son who had returned to Calcutta from London on Wednesday were forced to leave a club on Thursday morning, where they allegedly went to play tennis.
Sources said the doctor was detailing the “dos and don’ts” to tackle the novel coronavirus when some fellow members protested.
“Some members started criticising him for not getting himself and his son quarantined after returning from abroad and exposing other members to the risk of infection. There were loud protests. The doctor heard them and left with his son,” a source at the club said.
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee, at her meeting with representatives of private hospitals and government officials at Nabanna on Thursday, appealed to doctors who have returned from abroad to not step out of home.
“Physicians coming from outside, there are many of them, please ensure they do not ignore the isolation and quarantine rules. This is imperative,” she said. “Not just them, those who came in contact with them must also follow the rules.”
From 5.30pm on Wednesday, anyone arriving from abroad is being sent to a government quarantine facility. There, doctors are deciding who will be in home quarantine and who need to spend two weeks at the facility.
Some residents of a housing complex in Ballygunge have accused a woman of flouting the home quarantine rule after returning from London on Wednesday morning. According to the accounts shared by multiple residents, she returned from London on Wednesday morning.
She is said to have stepped out of her home on at least two occasions — on Wednesday night and Thursday morning. “A section of neighbours tried to persuade her to stay in home isolation for 14 days. They also requested her mother to ensure that her daughter follows the norm. But to no avail,” said a resident. A member of the residents’ committee of the complex declined comment.
The Telegraph gives a lowdown on home quarantine
Who needs home quarantine?
All contacts of a suspected or confirmed Covid-19 patient
Who is a contact?
- A person living in the same house as a suspected or confirmed Covid-19 patient
- A person in physical contact with a suspected or confirmed Covid-19 case or his/her infectious secretions without wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) or with a breach in PPE
- A person who was in a closed environment or had face-to-face contact with a suspected or confirmed Covid-19 case within 1 metre. This includes air travel
Guidelines for a person in home quarantine:
- Stay in a well-ventilated room, preferably with an attached/separate toilet. If another family member needs to stay in the same room, it is advisable to maintain a distance of at least 1 metre between the two
- Stay away from elderly people, pregnant women, children and persons with co-morbidities in the household
- Restrict movement within the house
- Don’t attend any social/religious gatherings
- Wash hands regularly with soap and water or with alcohol-based hand sanitiser
- Avoid sharing household items — including dishes, glasses and towels — with others at home
- Wear a surgical mask all the time. The mask should be changed every 6 to 8 hours and disposed of. Disposed-of masks are not to be reused.
- Masks used by patients/ caregivers/close contacts during home care should be disinfected using ordinary bleach solution (5 per cent) or sodium hypochlorite solution (1 per cent) and then disposed of by burning or deep burial
- Used mask should be considered potentially infected
- If symptoms (cough/ fever/difficulty in breathing) appear, he/she should immediately inform the nearest health centre or call helplines.
Source: Union ministry of health and family welfare