Thiruvananthapuram: In view of new genetic variants of COVID-19 being reported from different parts of the world, Kerala government on Monday (October 17) said it is intensifying preventive measures in the state. Kerala Health Minister Veena George in a statement said as the new genetic variants — XBB and XBB1 — of COVID-19 are more contagious than earlier ones, everyone — especially the elderly and those suffering from co-morbidities — should be more careful and wear masks properly for self-protection.
Since the elderly and those with co-morbidities are more likely to be severely affected by the new COVID variants, they as well as healthcare workers must take the booster/ precautionary dose of the vaccine.
She requested that masks be worn at airports and in closed public places.
The minister further said around 1.8 per cent of those infected by the new variants may require hospitalisation, but as of now there was no cause for concern.
She also said presently the COVID-19 infections in the state are decreasing, but despite that samples were being regularly sent to check for the presence of any new genetic variant. In the latest situation, more samples will be sent for genetic testing, she added.
Besides that, as influenza cases are also being reported, a separate set of guidelines would be issued in respect of that, the minister said.
(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.