Health Ministry's containment plan yet to address community transmission

India is preparing for a ‘scenario-based approach’ in tackling the Covid-19 outbreak, in which the last stage would be endemic — right before widespread community transmission — said the health ministry’s updated containment plan for large outbreaks. 

“The actions for the mitigation phase would be dealt separately under a mitigation plan,” the health ministry said. The ministry has estimated that around 15 per cent of the patients will require hospitalisation, and an additional 5 per cent will require critical care and ventilator management. The strategy has been for containment of large outbreaks — the third in the line of five scenarios — through perimeter control, active searches of cases, isolation, testing suspect cases and patients of severe acute respiratory infection (SARI), among others. Besides, administering the HCQ drug to health workers and clinical management of the disease have been part of the plan.
The document says that since the spread could be high, it’s unlikely that it would uniformly affect all parts of the country. “This calls for a differential approach to different regions of the country, while mounting a strong containment effort in hotspots.”

In case of the H1N1, too, it was found that well-connected big cities were reporting a large number of cases, the health ministry said.

Also, operations will be scaled down if no secondary laboratory confirmed case of Covid-19 is reported from the geographic quarantine zone for at least four weeks after the last confirmed test has been isolated and all his contacts have been followed up for 28 days. However, surveillance will continue those with SARI and influenza like illnesses.


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