Karnataka advises people to follow Covid-appropriate behaviour as newer subvariants emerge in neighbouring state

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India’s southern Karnataka state has urged people to stick to Covid-19 appropriate behaviour as newer sub-variants were detected in the neighbouring Maharashtra state and amid large gatherings due to the festive season.

“In view of reporting newer sub-variants of Omicron BQ.1 (US variant) BA.2.3.20 apart from XBB, which is a recombinant of BA.2.75 and BJ.1 in Maharashtra and in the context of the ensuing festival season of Deepavali and Kannada Rajyothsava the following advisory is issued to General public,” Karnataka’s Commissionerate of Health and Family Welfare said.

“Those with fever, cough, cold, sore throat, breathing difficulty should compulsorily get tested immediately at the nearest hospital or health centres (preferably Rapid Antigen Test, if negative then RT-PCR, and get self-isolated till the results are received,” the department added.

Those with breathing difficulties should seek urgent medical care, preferably in a hospital.

“Face masking while indoors, in places with air-conditioning, not well-ventilated areas, closed places, in crowds and in health facilities (N-95 / medical masks). It is very important that elderly and Co-morbid wear face masks in public areas,” according to the advisory.

The department has also advised people to celebrate festivities outdoors and avoid crowding indoors as far as possible.

“It is important that those who are aged 60 years and above, and with co-morbidities (particularly not naturally infected previously) should get vaccinated early. Those who are immune-deficient and immunosuppressed, on renal dialysis, taking anticancer drugs, etc. are advised to get vaccinated on priority basis in consultation with their treating doctor,” the advisory said.

The department urged people to use environment friendly “green crackers” in the larger interest of public health and safety.

(With PTI inputs)

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