At CSMIA Airport Information

COVID-19 INFORMATION

What you should know about COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, it is crucial to have the right information and take the correct precautions and ensure your safety and well-being. Join the fight against the spread of Coronavirus by arming yourself with relevant information, including health guidelines, services available, emergency contact helplines, and more.

COVID-19 Explained

The World Health Organisation declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic. The symptoms of COVID-19 appear within two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, a runny nose and difficulty in breathing.

How does the disease spread?

It primarily spreads through the respiratory droplets of infected people. If a person touches a surface or object that has been infected by the virus and then touches his own mouth, nose, or eyes, he may get infected.

Who is affected?

While people of all ages can be affected by the disease, people aged 80 and above are at the highest risk of dying due to COVID-19, according to case records analysed by the Disease Control and Prevention Centers in China and South Korea. Victims of the virus with pre-existing medical conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes have a higher fatality rate than others. Also the rate of fatalities was relatively higher for retirees.

What are the symptoms?

The guidelines from the Union Health Ministry for early recognition of COVID-19 patients are those who come in with Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARI) who also have a history of foreign travel or close contact with another COVID-19 patient.

As per the guidelines, "COVID-19 may present with mild, moderate, or severe illness; the latter includes severe pneumonia, ARDS [Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome], sepsis and septic shock."

How can it be detected?

The virus can be detected using a RT-PCR test. An RT-PCR or reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction test is DNA-based and can quickly tell if someone harbours the virus. In India, about 89 government facilities to test for the virus include 52 labs belonging to the Viral Research and Diagnostic Laboratories network of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 10 labs under the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), and the NIV (List attached as Annexure I). In addition to these few private labs have also been approved recently by ICMR. (List attached as Annexure II).

What is the treatment?

There is no current evidence from randomised controlled trial to recommend any specific treatment for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients. No specific anti-virals are recommended for treatment of those suffering from respiratory ailment due to lack of adequate evidence from medical literature.
Few antiviral & other drugs are being used on under medical supervision. Avoid stocking up on Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) or Chloroquine or Antivirals- these medicines do cause side effects and should not be used inadvertently. (HCQ is being used for people who have been exposed - but not everyone). If everyone keeps 'only one' strip at home,
IT WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE FOR THOSE WHO REALLY NEED IT!

Can a vaccine be developed for COVID-19?

According to Raman. R. Gangakhedkar, head of the Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases-I (ECD-I), Division of ICMR, there are two ways of going for vaccine preparation — either you look at the sequences of the gene which then may lead to development of antibodies, or you actually have the strain and then you try to develop a vaccine which is always an easier option. He said Indian scientists have managed to successfully isolate the COVID-19 virus and about 11 isolates are available which is a prime requisite for doing any kind of research related to viruses and developing the vaccine.

Internationally, several institutes and pharmaceutical companies are in various stages of developing the vaccine with some set to go on clinical trials soon.

Frequently Answered Questions

SCREENING PROCESS:

Why is screening required?

Identification of passengers potentially infected with coronavirus is an important measure to curb the spread of the disease across the globe. Since airports are the gateway to a country, it is required to conduct screenings at the airport to identify any passenger suffering from the symptoms of coronavirus. These include showing signs of cough, high fever and shortness of breath.

Who has to undergo the screening?

During the lockdown, screenings are being conducted for the crew of cargo and charter flights. Additionally, passengers evacuating to their home countries via Mumbai airport are being screened before they enter the terminal.

How do you identify if a passenger is displaying symptoms of the common flu or COVID-19?

The symptoms of COVID-19 are pretty similar to that of the common flu – cold, cough and fever. However, there are a few warning signs that could mean that the passenger might be infected with coronavirus and are transferred to a pre-designated hospital for further testing. These signs include having a fever and cough which is complicated by breathing trouble and also having a history of travel to COVID-affected countries or coming in contact with someone with this history, 14 days prior to landing at the airport.

How effective is a thermal scanner in detecting people infected with coronavirus?

Thermal scanners are only a preliminary testing device to identify passengers displaying symptoms of the coronavirus like a high fever. It cannot detect people who are infected but not yet sick with fever; the symptoms only become obvious within 2-14 days of having been infected. Hence passengers are encouraged to self-declare their full travel history and follow the guidance of the health authorities.

What happens if a passenger is suspected as having symptoms of the virus?

Passengers displaying symptoms of coronavirus are instantly separated from the others and transferred to a pre-designated hospital for further testing. The airport has dedicated and fully equipped ambulances and employees on standby for this eventuality.

SAFETY MEASURES:

How often is the airport sanitized?

The airport ensures regular sanitization of all areas, with special emphasis on passenger touch points, multiple times a day. Similarly, the airport also fumigates its premises at frequent intervals as a measure to curb the spread of the virus.

Where can I find sanitizers at the airport?

Sanitizers are strategically placed at every touch point of the passenger’s movement through the terminal. The airport also encourages the use of water and soap for thorough hand-washing as per the guidelines of the APHO, GOI; step-by-step instructions on the hand-washing process are placed for the easy reference of passengers as well.

What can passengers do to stay safe during the journey?

Passengers are encouraged to follow the guidelines highlighted by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOFHW); these include coughing or sneezing into a tissue or a flexed elbow rather than your hands, refraining from touching your face after touching public use surfaces, regularly sanitizing hands amongst others. It is also recommended that passengers ensure that they wear face masks and gloves and carry hand sanitizers with them for the full length of their journey.

Is there any medical outlet available at the airport?

Apollo Pharmacy at the airport is operational round the clock to meet last minute requirements related to medicines, masks etc. However, it is recommended that passengers purchase the required Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) before entering the airport.

TRAVEL:

When does the airport resume operations?

As per the latest directive from the government, all commercial international and domestic flight operations are suspended until 23:59 Hrs IST on May 31, 2020. This directive however, does not apply to cargo operations and flights specifically approved by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). As a result, the airport is still operational to facilitate cargo operations, medical charter flights and evacuation flights for foreigners stranded in India.

When are the domestic flights expected to resume?

The circular issued by Ministry of Civil Aviation on 14th April 2020 stated that all domestic flights operations are suspended until 23:59 hours IST on 31st May 2020.

When are the International flights expected to resume?

The circular issued by Ministry of Civil Aviation on 14th April 2020 stated that all international flights operations are suspended until 23:59 hours IST on 31st May 2020.

Are charter flights arriving in India?

As per the government order, charter flights are restricted entry into India unless approved by the DGCA. So far the aviation authority has approved the operation of charter flights for medical purposes including the transportation of paramedics and medical equipment.

Why are some international flights still operating during the lockdown?

As per the latest directive from the government, all commercial international flight operations are suspended until 23:59 hrs on 31st May 2020. However, DGCA has approved the operation of certain flights evacuating stranded foreigners back to their home countries.

Once operations resume, what can arriving travelers expect at CSMIA?

The airport is currently undertaking several measures to ensure health and safety of its passengers and employees. The airport will continue and enhance best practices that were being observed during the suspension of commercial international flights including screening of passengers and crew by the Airport Health Organization (APHO), sanitization and fumigation amongst others.
Passengers can also expect to see floor markers placed at all checkpoints with regular queuing for maintaining social distancing at high passenger interfaces

Once operations resume, what can departing travelers expect at CSMIA?

The airport is currently undertaking several measures to ensure health and safety of its passengers and employees. All areas of the terminal especially the washrooms and passenger touch points are sanitized thoroughly and frequently.
Passengers can expect to see social distancing markers placed at all checkpoints right from the entrance to the terminal, check-in counters and kiosks, security and outlets amongst others. Relevant signage with alert messages and precautions have also been placed at the airport to guide passengers on the procedures and to reiterate the need for practicing safety measures.

How can I avail wheelchair services at the airport?

Wheelchair services are solely the responsibility of the carrier you are flying with. Passengers are recommended to pre-arrange the wheelchair service. The Airport has identified a designated entry point for wheelchair users. Airlines have been mandated to strictly adhere to sanitation of wheelchairs after every single use.

What is to be done in case the airline cannot extend wheelchair service?

Certain exemptions can be made if the airline is unable to extend the wheelchair service to passengers with special needs, injuries or senior citizens. In these cases, passengers are requested to contact the airport authorities 24 hours prior to their departure at feedback@csia.gvk.com with flight details and contact number for assistance.

I have paid for tickets on dates that now fall under the lockdown period. How do I cancel/reschedule or get a refund?

Passengers are requested to get in touch with the respective airlines for clarifications.

Self-preventive measures

KEY Steps to protect yourself against COVID-19

Guidelines by the World Health Organization specify that one of the ways to reduce the risk of infection is by regularly and thoroughly cleaning one's hands with washing them with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub. Regular washing becomes important as the virus tends to be viable from hours to more than a day on different surfaces that are regularly touched with hands.

Hand Hygiene

Follow the proper 6 steps of hand washing. DON'T FREAK OUT if you don't have sanitiser. SOAP AND WATER are enough.

Hand Hygiene
Hand Hygiene
Hand Hygiene

Washing with soap

The grime on our hands contains innumerable viruses and bacteria. Washing with water and soap is a very effective way of removing multiple including viruses & bacteria from our hands.
Viruses such as coronavirus, influenza-causing viruses, Ebola, Zika have their genetic material encased in a layer of fat called the lipid envelope. Soap molecules are pin-shaped with a head that is water-loving (hydrophilic) and a tail that is oil-loving (oleophilic).
Being oleophilic, the tail portion of the molecule tends to have an affinity for and 'competes' with the lipids in the virus envelope. Since the chemical bonds holding the virus together are not very strong, the long oleophilic tail gets inserted into the envelope and tends to have a 'crowbar' effect that breaks the lipid envelope of the virus. The tail also competes with the bond that binds the RNA and the lipid envelop thus dissolving the virus into its components which are then removed by water.

Alcohol-based hand sanitisers

Like soap, the alcohol present in hand sanitisers dissolve the lipid envelope, thus inactivating the virus. In addition, the alcohol also tends to change the shape or denature the mushroom-shaped protein structures that stick out of the lipid envelope. The mushroom-shaped protein structures help the virus to bind to special structures found on human cells and enter the cells. To be effective, the sanitisers should contain at least 60% alcohol.

While a sanitiser can quickly reduce the number of microbes, it does not get rid of all types of germs, and is "not as effective as soap & water when hands are visibly dirty or greasy".

Using a mask

Use of mask by each & everyone has become a fashion. The guidelines about use of facemask by public were already shared with you earlier. The same cane be assessed at https://www.mohfw.gov.in/DraftUseofmaskbypublic.pdf

Social distancing

Social distancing
Social distancing

The WHO says that you should maintain at least 1 to 2 metre (about 3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing. This is because when someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. "If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has the disease," says the WHO.

Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth

Hands can pick up viruses as they come in contact with many surfaces. It can then transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.

Practise respiratory hygiene

Practise respiratory hygiene

Cover your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.

Discourage Open Spitting

Practise respiratory hygiene

Avoid spitting openly. Learn to swallow. If not, spit in a dustbin, in a commode or wash basin & flush with plenty of water.

Myth Busters

Myths around COVID-19

There have been several myths around the disease, like consuming more garlic, curry leaves or cow's urine would treat or protect one from the disease.

The World Health Organisation has busted such misleading claims. On garlic, WHO said it is a healthy food that may have some antimicrobial properties but there is no evidence that it has prevented people from contracting the COVID19

Here are some other myths and the WHO's response to them:

Myth 1:

"COVID-19 virus cannot be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates"

From the evidence so far, the COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in ALL AREAS, including areas with hot and humid weather. Regardless of climate, adopt protective measures if you live in, or travel to an area reporting COVID-19. The best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 is by frequently cleaning your hands. By doing this you eliminate viruses that may be on your hands and avoid infection that could occur by then touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.

Myth 2:

The new coronavirus can be transmitted through mosquito bites.

To date there has been no information nor evidence to suggest that the new coronavirus could be transmitted by mosquitoes. The new coronavirus is a respiratory virus which spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose. To protect yourself, clean your hands frequently with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Also, avoid close contact with anyone who is coughing and sneezing.

Announcements

Stay updated on the latest directives and announcements