New Delhi: As Kerala prepares for post lockdown phase, the state has decided to come up with a unique awareness campaign to prepare its masses for the new normal in times of COVID-19. The state has inaugurated ‘Break The Chain’ campaign, where cartoons characters will be used to convey important social messages like wash hands regularly using soap or sanitiser, wear masks and continue to keep social distancing.
Health Minister KK Shailaja who flagged off this campaign in the state on May 21 talked about the motive of the campaign and said,
We have introduced the campaign in five cities as of now and the main aim is to spread the awareness of these new-normal habits in one’s life with the help of this campaign.
The cartoons will be painted by well-known cartoonists of the state on the walls across the state in the coming days.
Dr Mohammad Asheel, Executive Director of Social Security Mission giving details about this initiative added,
In the first phase, 14 cities in 14 districts are selected to complete cartoon drawings. In the next phase, it will be extended to 28 cities.
Talking about Kerala and how it has dealt with the pandemic over the past few months, Health Minister K K Shailaja said,
Kerala, by far has been one of the few states to successfully contain the spread of the virus. We need to maintain this even after the lockdown is lifted. We have reported new COVID-19 positive cases as more people are now coming to the state. We all should be careful and prevent it from spreading. Though the world has approved of our protocol, standard operating methods and quarantine methods, the number of patients will increase in the coming days. To prevent the spread of COVID-19, we have to follow the quarantine protocol strictly. Committees under ward members in local bodies should monitor people in quarantine. Otherwise, our state will be in a problematic situation. People should follow the directions of the health department and the Chief Minister. The CM has said that we will survive this situation. We should stand together and co-operate with the government to fight against COVID-19.
As of today, according to the ministry of health and family welfare, Kerala has reported around 690 cases, of which, around 510 people have recovered and 4 have lost their lives due to COVID-19.
Apart from this, Kerala has taken many positive steps in the wake of the pandemic. Earlier this month, the state had come out with a novel idea to ensure proper social distancing. It decided to make it mandatory for the taxis running within the state to have fibreglass partition installed within the taxis so that the taxi drivers do not come into physical contact with passengers. Along with this, Kerala is also one of the first Indian states that decided to intervene and made sure that free mid-day meals are being delivered to the beneficiaries and there is minimal impact on the nutrition status of the children in Kerala.
According to the Kerala government data, around 38,547 samples have been sent for coronavirus testing till date, of which, more than 37,000 have proved negative. Moreover, the state is testing not just patients with travel history or who show some kind of symptoms but also asymptomatic patients. Kerala has also set-up walk-in sample kiosk (Wisk) in some areas, which is the first of its kind in India, inspired by similar models deployed in South Korea, for mass collection of samples from people with symptoms for COVID-19.