New Delhi: Mock drills are being conducted today across the nation today at hospitals to evaluate Covid-19 preparedness. Tamil Nadu Health Minister Ma Subramanian on Monday (April 10) inspected a mock drill for emergency response for handling Covid-19 at Rajiv Gandhi General Hospital in Chennai. While talking to ANI, the health minister said,
We have 350 or fewer Covid-19 infection cases in Tamil Nadu and no need to fear in our state as of now. We predict that 4th wave will have a mild effect compared to the third wave.
Meanwhile, in Haryana’s Jhajjar, a Covid-19 preparedness drill is being conducted at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). On Friday (April 7), Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, who chaired a review meeting with states, urged them to conduct mock drills of all hospital infrastructure on April 10 and 11 and review the health preparedness with district administrations and health officials.
Dr. Mandaviya, during the meeting, also urged states to identify emerging hotspots by monitoring trends of influenza-like illness (ILI) and severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) cases and sending sufficient samples for testing of COVID-19 and Influenza; and ramping up whole genome sequencing of positive samples.
It was observed that 23 states and UTs had average tests per million below the national average. Dr. Mandaviya said,
Irrespective of the new COVID variants, the five-fold strategy of ‘Test-Track-Treat-Vaccinate and Adherence to COVID Appropriate Behaviour’ continue to remain the tested strategy for COVID management. This would facilitate the undertaking of appropriate public health measures.
According to the union health ministry, states and UTs were also requested to expeditiously increase the rate of testing from the current rate of 100 tests per million, as of the week ending 7th April and further advised to increase the share of RT-PCR in tests.
States and UTs were briefed that India has been witnessing a steady increase in COVID-19 cases with average daily cases rising to 4,188 in the week ending April 7 from 571 in the week ending March 17, and weekly positivity up to 3.02 per cent in the week ending April 7. States and UTs were further informed that currently WHO is closely tracking one variant of interest (VOI), XBB.1.5 and six other variants are under monitoring (BQ.1, BA.2.75, CH.1.1, XBB, XBF and XBB.1.16). It was highlighted that while Omicron and its sub-lineages continue to be the predominant variant, most of the assigned variants have little or no significant transmissibility, disease severity or immune escape. The prevalence of XBB.1.16 increased from 21.6 per cent in Feb to 35.8 per cent in March. However, no evidence of an increase in hospitalization or mortality has been reported.
It was also informed that while India has achieved over 90 per cent coverage of primary vaccination, the coverage of precaution dose is very low.
According to the ministry, eight states are reporting a high number of Covid cases in India with 10 or more districts reporting more than 10 per cent positivity in Kerala, Maharashtra and Delhi and over 5 districts reporting more than 5 per cent positivity in the states of Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Haryana.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ population, indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.