Eighty-four locals to be tested for Covid-19 today | Sunday Observer
Russian airline crew contacts

Eighty-four locals to be tested for Covid-19 today

27 September, 2020
Russian airline

Eighty-four people who came in contact with the Russian airline crew members will be tested for Covid-19 today (27) and released if the tests proved negative, Army Commander Lt. Gen. Shavendra Silva told the Sunday Observer yesterday.

A member of the airline crew was tested positive for Covid-19 on Thursday (24), but the second and third PCR tests were negative. He and his colleagues, who arrived in the country on September 13, were quarantined in a hotel in Polhena, Matara.

Officials initially contemplated a lockdown in Matara but it was ruled out later. Several families who came in contact with the airline crew were placed in Army-run quarantine centres.

Silva said that the crew member will be discharged from hospital. The other crew members have already left the country. Chief Epidemiologist, Ministry of Health, Dr. Sugath Samaraweera said that it was normal for a test to be positive and then negative again.

“It depends on how the virus sheds. It could shed from time to time. There was nothing wrong with the first test,” he said. An anti-body test conducted on the Russian aircrew member revealed that he had contracted Covid-19 before and has now recovered.

Dr. Samaraweera said that since he had the virus earlier, the remaining virus could shed sometimes, but the possibility of another person contracting the virus from him is highly unlikely.

“We did the right thing at the time and the test was positive. We took all precautions to avoid a possible community transmission,” he said.