New Delhi (NVI): The Center has deputed high level multi-disciplinary teams to 10 states and Union Territory that have seen a recent surge in the number of coronavirus cases, the Ministry of Health said.
The teams have been rushed to Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Jammu and Kashmir.
They will support these states in implementing public health measures for targeted COVID-19 response and management and effectively tackling the pandemic.
In a official statement, the Health Ministry said, “The three-member multidisciplinary teams are headed by Joint Secretary level officers in the ministry. These teams will work closely with the states and UT administration and ascertain reasons for recent surge in the number of COVID-19 cases there.”
They will also coordinate with health authorities of the states and UT for requisite COVID-19 control measures to break the chain of transmission, it added.
The Centre also advised the states and UT for regular critical review of the emerging situation with concerned district officials to ensure that gains made so far in COVID-19 management are not lost.
Apart from this, the Centre has also written to Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir, where there has been a rise in daily cases and the proportion of RT-PCR tests has been decreasing.
“The Union Health Secretary, in the letter has asked these states and UT to focus on undertaking aggressive measures to break the chain of transmission and to ensure that RT-PCR testing is amplified,” the statement said.
It added that states have been advised to increase testing in a focused manner in the affected districts with the appropriate split of RT-PCR and Rapid Antigen Tests.
They will ensure that all symptomatic negatives of antigen tests are compulsorily tested via RT-PCR tests, the ministry said, adding that, “The positive persons must be promptly isolated or hospitalized, all their close contacts be traced and also tested without delay.”
Further, the Centre also reminded the states and UTs that any laxity in implementing stringent measures to curb the spread, especially in view of new strain of virus observed in certain countries, could compound the situation.
The health secretary has separately requested the chief secretaries of these 10 states and UT to provide time to these high level central teams to debrief the respective chief secretaries at the conclusion of their state visits, the statement said.
These measures are in line with government of graded and proactive approach to contain COVID-19 across the country, it added.