Preeti Sudan.. Image Source: IANS News

New Delhi, May 23 : Union Health Secretary Preeti Sudan along with other senior officials of the Health Ministry on Saturday interacted with representatives of 11 municipal areas from Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Rajasthan which have reported a high number of COVID-19 cases.

These areas alone account for 70% of India's active case-load.

A presentation was made to highlight the trend in case trajectory with respect to total confirmed cases, the fatality rate, doubling time, tests per million and confirmation percentage.

The major challenge lies in those corporations having shorter doubling time, higher mortality rate and a higher confirmation rate than the national average.

They were briefed about the factors to be considered while mapping the containment and buffer zones; the activities mandated in containment zones such as perimeter control, active search for cases through house-to-house surveillance, contact tracing, testing protocol and clinical management of 'active' cases.

Surveillance activities in the buffer zone such as monitoring of SARI/ILI cases, ensuring social distancing and promoting hand hygiene were also stressed doing the interaction.

Key officials from the Health Ministry told the representatives of the municipal corporations to maintain high vigilance and monitoring in areas of old cities, urban slums and other high-density pockets along with camps or clusters of migrant workers.

Sudan's team told the affected corporations that screening of high-risk population and groups and effective and sturdy clinical management of the admitted cases are necessary to reduce the fatality rate.

The ministry team also said that out of those 11 corporations, which are yet to create a 24/7 control room, must do it on priority.

Testing needs to be stepped up, Sudan's team told the corporations, which can help in early detection of COVID-19 cases, timely clinical management and a reduction in fatality rate.

Also highlighted were better coordination and the use of local languages.

Some good examples were also shared: Mumbai Municipal Commissioner briefed about establishing close cooperation between private hospitals and municipal authorities for pooling in the health infrastructure such as the ICU and oxygen beds. The authorities in Indore focused on contact tracing and active house-to-house surveys.

 Latest updates on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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