– globalbihari bureau
New Delhi: Post Unlock 1, at least 45 municipalities/municipal corporations across 38 districts in ten states have shown a surge in COVID-19 cases, the government stated here on Monday. The surge has been reported from Maharashtra, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Uttarakhand and Madhya Pradesh, it added.
With the total number of active Coronavirus cases standing at 1,24,981, and in all 7200 deaths reported thus far because of the pandemic, Health Secretary Preeti Sudan and Rajesh Bhushan, OSD, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHWF) along with senior officers of the Health Ministry, held a high level review meeting (through video conference) with the District Collectors, Municipal Commissioners, Chief Medical Officers, Superintendent of District Hospitals and Principle of Medical Colleges from the affected districts.
“Main issues discussed were the widespread infection in densely populated urban areas, with areas that shared public amenities; importance of house-to-house surveys; prompt testing followed by prompt isolation and clinical management of cases and containment strategy to be implemented,” a Health ministry spokesperson stated.
In view of the lockdown being eased and curbs being lifted, while states were advised to make a district wise prospective plan for the coming months, the state officials were advised on the measures to be taken in the containment zones. States were also reminded to activate the fever clinics for detection of SARI/ILI cases in the buffer zones.
To reduce the case fatality rate, the officials were asked to prioritise their attention on the high-risk and vulnerable segments like elderly people and people with co-morbidities while contact-tracing to prevent deaths. They were further advised to ensure active surveillance measures, adequate testing and promoting health seeking behaviour for timely detection of cases; and ensuring timely shifting of patients without escalating the symptoms. They were also asked to ensure provision of adequate number of surveillance teams. They were also told to put in place a system for bed availability management.
While speaking on field governance, Municipal authorities were advised to take leadership and put the whole municipal infrastructure for containment measures using the ‘whole of Government approach’. It was also highlighted that along with COVID-19 management efforts, care needs to be given to the regular and essential health services that are also available for the citizens.
Areas that need constant attention included active house-to-house survey for timely detection; augmentation of the survey teams; efficient ambulance management; efficient triaging of patients at the hospitals and bed management; clinical management of the hospitalised cases through rotational 24*7 teams to ensure reduction in the fatality rates they were also advised to ensure that the testing results were returned by the labs in time for ensuring early identification and timely treatment. It was also suggested to involve the elected representatives in the rural areas for cooperating with the district health authorities for confidence building and timely accessing of available health services.