Centre reviews situation in 10 states reporting upsurge in COVID-19 cases

Centre reviews situation in 10 states reporting upsurge in COVID-19 cases

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Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan. (Photo/ANI)

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan. (Photo/ANI)

New Delhi [India], July 31 (ANI): The Centre on Saturday reviewed the Covid-19 situation in ten states that are witnessing an upsurge in Covid cases and Test Positivity Rate (TPR).

The ten states – Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Assam, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Andhra Pradesh and Manipur – are either reporting a rise in new daily COVID cases or a rise in positivity, a Union Health Ministry statement said.

In a high-level review meeting chaired by Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, the states were advised to prevent crowds and intermingling in districts with over 10 per cent TPR.

The public health measures taken for surveillance, containment and management of COVID-19 by the health authorities in these states were also reviewed. These States are either reporting a rise in new daily COVID cases or a rise in positivity.

The Union Secretary for Healthy and Family Welfare has shared strategies to tackle rising COVID-19 cases.

All districts reporting a positivity rate of more than ten per cent in the last few weeks need to consider strict restrictions to prevent the movement of people and the formation of crowds to prevent the spread of infection. It was forcefully underlined that any laxity at this stage will result in deterioration of the situation in these districts, informed the Ministry.

The Health Secretary further guided that the people in home isolation should be effectively monitored in such a manner to ensure that those who require hospitalization are seamlessly transferred for timely clinical treatment.

He stated that the Union Government has been supporting states by providing oxygen concentrators, oxygen cylinders and PSA plants. In addition to this, States are using their own resources to put up Pressure swing adsorption (PSA) plants in government hospitals. States were advised to direct private hospitals to put up hospital-based PSA plants. States have been advised earlier regarding this in the past two months.

Provisions under the Clinical Establishment Act enable States to issue such direction to private hospitals. For states which have already issued such directions, they were advised to review the status and facilitate the private hospitals further.

Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) warned against any complacency with around 40,000 cases being reported daily since the preceding weeks. Highlighting the fact that 46 districts are showing more than 10% positivity while another 53 districts are showing a positivity between five per cent to 10 per cent, Health Secretary urged the states to ramp up their testing.

States have been advised to conduct their own state-level serosurveys for district-wise disease prevalence data, as the national level seroprevalence survey was heterogeneous in nature, in collaboration with ICMR to ensure the same sturdy protocols of the survey.

Rajesh Bhushan advised the states to ramp up vaccination in the 45-60 age categories as evidence shows near 80 per cent of the mortality is from these vulnerable age groups. Regarding enforcement measures, he advised the state authorities for avoiding all non-essential travel and to discourage all large gatherings of crowds.

Through a detailed presentation, a granular analysis of the highly affected districts in these states, COVID-19 vaccination coverage, the status of Ventilators, PSA plants, oxygen cylinders and concentrators along with some key statistics was presented.

States were asked to use the Indian SARS-CoV Genomic Consortia (INSACOG) laboratory network for genomic surveillance to screen International Travelers for the entry of new variants in India from other countries, monitor ongoing surveillance through sentinel sites and surge surveillance.

States were advised to undertake intensive containment and active surveillance in clusters reporting higher cases and to define containment zones, based on mapping of cases and contacts traced.

To undertake regular reviews and follow-up for implementation of ECRP-II with a focus on augmentation of existing health infrastructure particularly in rural areas and paediatric cases.

States have been advised to report death count as per ICMR guidelines.

Dr Balram Bhargava, DG ICMR and Secretary (DHR) were also present in the review meeting. (ANI)

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