Editorial Analysis - 23rd June
Vigilance Paramount : The fight against COVID-19
India crossed 4 Lakh reported COVID-19 cases with more than 14 thousand deaths.
- Wider spread in the communities, particularly in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Ahmedabad.
- Test positivity rate increased from 4.6% in mid May to 7.9% in June.
- Mortality Rate is steadily increasing with more than 14 thousand deaths. (3.4% at present)
- The healthcare system is already strained
- Loosening of restrictions in Unlock phase
- High risk due to densely packed communities
Lessons from the States:
- Kerala - with a strong healthcare system was fully geared even before the first case was reported.
- Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh - utilised the early phase of the lockdown to track, test and isolate those infected and traced contacts.
- Maharashtra - with enhanced testing was able to achieve containment in Dharavi.
- U.P , Bihar and West Bengal - with large numbers of returning migrants have reported few cases , raising a concern about their testing and counting.
- Tamil Nadu - has increased tests through fever clinics and focus is on people with influenza like illness in high spread areas.
- Need for large scale door-to-door surveillance and testing
- Involving the community in tracing contacts of COVID-19 patients as seen in Kerala and Karnataka.
- States must learn from each other and follow the strategies that proved effective in containing the spread.
- Providing Oximeters (to monitor oxygen levels) to patients under home isolation as done in Delhi.
- In these times of crisis, both centre and states must work in unison to tackle the challenges raised by COVID-19.
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