DPH asks AAI to strictly follow revised guidelines on international arrivals following increasing COVID cases in some countries

International passengers arriving at the Chennai International Airport on Thursday.

International passengers arriving at the Chennai International Airport on Thursday.
| Photo Credit: B. VELANKANNI RAJ

The Directorate of Public Health (DPH) and Preventive Medicine has asked the Airports Authority of India (AAI) to strictly follow the revised guidelines on international arrivals from 10 a.m. on Saturday, in view of the increasing trajectory of COVID-19 cases in some countries.

In a communication to airport authorities of the four international airports in the State, T.S. Selvavinayagam, Director of Public Health, said 2% of the total passengers should undergo random post-arrival testing for COVID-19. The respective airlines should identify such travellers in each flight.

They should submit the samples and then be allowed to leave the airport. If such a traveller’s sample tests positive, it should be further sent for genomic testing at the State Public Health Laboratory, Chennai. They would be treated/isolated as per standard protocol.

All travellers advised for self-monitoring on post-arrival should report to the nearest health facility or contact the State health helpline –104, if they have symptoms that are suggestive of COVID-19.

The DPH noted that children under the age of 12 are exempted from post-arrival random testing. However, if found symptomatic for COVID-19 on arrival or during the period of self-monitoring, they should undergo testing and treatment as per protocol.

All travellers should preferably be fully vaccinated as per the approved primary schedule of vaccination against COVID-19.

Passengers found symptomatic during travel should be segregated as per standard protocol, wear masks, isolate themselves from other passengers, and subsequently be shifted to an isolation facility.

Physical distancing must be ensured while de-boarding. Thermal screening should be done for all passengers at the point of entry.

On screening, symptomatic passengers should be isolated and referred to a designated medical facility, he said.

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