PM Modi Stresses on Tests, Oxygen Supply at Meet with CMs, Officials of 7 States with Maximum Cases

PM Modi holds a meeting with chief ministers of seven states on Wednesday.

PM Modi holds a meeting with chief ministers of seven states on Wednesday.

Chief ministers and other representatives of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi and Punjab attended the virtual review meeting.

During a review meeting on the COVID-19 pandemic situation with chief ministers and other representatives of seven high-case-load states, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday stressed on the need for maintaining oxygen supply and improving the number of tests being conducted.

He asked states to reassess if lockdowns of one or two days are effective in containing COVID-19 and told them to press on with full strength in opening economic activities while fighting the virus. Modi said "micro containment zones" should be the way forward as it will curb the infection spread and also allow activities to go on.

Noting that most of the COVID-19 patients are asymptomatic, Modi said an effective messaging is all the more important as rumours often get spread and the common man wonders if the testing is wrong.

Some people even make the mistake of undermining the seriousness of the disease, he said, while pitching for the need for an effective messaging. The prime minister said it has to be ensured that medicines move unhindered from one state to another and noted that India has also been able to supply medicines across the world during such hard times. The nationwide lockdown in the initial phases yielded very positive results and our focus now should be on micro-containment zones, he said.

The virtual meeting, also attended by health ministers of these states, began in the evening. These states are Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Delhi and Punjab, officials said, noting that more than 63 per of the active cases in the country are concentrated in these seven states. They also account for 65.5 per cent of the total confirmed cases and 77 per cent of the total deaths, a statement had said earlier.

The PM also discussed air pollution in the upcoming winter months and its effect on lungs amid the coronavirus pandemic, as the disease often targets the respiratory organs of the patient. He said the focus was to be put on effective testing, tracing, treatment, surveillance and clear messaging.

Along with the other five states, Punjab and Delhi have reported an increase in the number of cases being reported recently, they said, adding that Maharashtra, Punjab and Delhi are also reporting high mortality with more than two per cent case fatality rate (CFR). Other than Punjab and Uttar Pradesh, the case positivity rate of these states has also been observed to be above the national average of 8.52 per cent. The Centre, as per the statement, has been leading the fight against COVID-19 in effective collaboration and close coordination with the state and union territory governments

(With inputs from PTI)

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