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NEW DELHI : coronavirus, coronavirus outbreak, ITBP camp in Chhawla, sample collection, ITBP coronavirus quarantine facility, health

A final sample collection of 404 inmates at an ITBP coronavirus quarantine facility in New Delhi is being carried out in order to determine if they can be discharged over the next few days, a senior official said on Thursday.

The facility has been hosting these people from early this month after they were evacuated from China in the aftermath of the coronavirus outbreak in that country.

"Final sample collection of all 404 people housed at our quarantine facility is being done by a team of doctors. While 200 samples have been taken today, the rest will be collected on Friday," ITBP spokesperson Vivek Kumar Pandey said.

The first samples, taken sometime back, had come out as negative for coronavirus.

Based on the fresh reports, Pandey said, a decision will be taken to discharge the travellers in the next few days after approvals by the Union health ministry authorities.

The government had created two large quarantine centres, one run by the border guarding force Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) in Chhawla area of Delhi, and the other managed by the Army in Manesar near here.

The ITBP is providing the inmates, including seven Maldivians, basic amenities like food, bed, television, internet and indoor games facility at its centre.

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said a total of 2,51,447 persons travelling in 2,315 flights have been screened so far.

Besides, 15,991 people across the country have been kept on community surveillance. Of them, 497 have been identified as symptomatic cases and isolated while 41 have been hospitalised, he said.

Passengers arriving from Thailand and Singapore, besides China and Hong Kong, are being screened for possible exposure to the virus at 21 identified airports. Screening is also being done at major seaports and border crossings.

The death toll from the coronavirus outbreak rose to 1,310 in China on Thursday while the number of those affected by the deadly virus has spiralled to 48,206.

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