SHILLONG, July 24 - The Meghalaya Government will reimpose a lockdown in the Shillong agglomeration from the midnight of July 26 till July 29 with the latest spike in COVID-19 cases in the State capital. Meanwhile, one more COVID-19 death has been reported in the State, raising the total virus death toll to five. A 67-year-old woman passed away at the NEIGRIHMS after testing positive on Thursday evening.
After a review meeting today, a decision was taken to impose the lockdown again to prevent community spread in the State capital as East Khasi Hills district alone accounts for 419 of the current 495 active cases in the State. The BSF has 287 active cases.
�If the situation worsens, we will further the lockdown,� Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong said.
Meanwhile, Mawpbah, Barapathar, Jhalupara, Upper Mawprem, parts of Mawlai, Lachumiere, Nongrim Hills Laitumkhrah, Golf Link and Nongrah (all within the State capital) have been declared as containment zones.
Tynsong said that the Health Department has been authorised to declare any area as a containment zone, if necessary. Health workers will trace contacts of positive patients during the lockdown period, he added.
As many as 53 new cases were reported during the past 24 hours in the State. At the same time, three BSF personnel and one patient each from East Jaintia Hills and Ri-Bhoi districts have recovered from the viral disease, taking the total recoveries in the State to 87.
Apart from the worst-hit East Khasi Hills district, Ri-Bhoi district has 41 cases, West Garo Hills has 15, West Jaintia Hills 5, South Garo Hills 2, four each in East Jaintia Hills and South West Garo Hills, and one each in East Garo Hills and North Garo Hills.
Meanwhile, the OPD of the Shillong Civil Hospital was temporarily closed today after a doctor tested positive. The Health Department has said that the doctor�s movement was limited to a few areas of the hospital. However, as a precautionary measure, tests were conducted on all his contacts.
Antigen test reports of 330 samples of both high- and low-risk contacts were found negative. However, the high-risk contacts of the doctor are being quarantined and their RT-PCR test is being conducted. All low-risk contacts, who have tested negative, have been allowed to continue with their work.
Moreover, the State Government has advised the public not to stigmatize health care workers. �The Government solicits cooperation from all community members to be more empathetic towards the health workers and doctors,� a health advisory said.