Ahead of Bakri Eid and Ganesh festivals, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday reiterated that religious, social and political gatheringswill remain prohibited in the state in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Addressing collectors and municipal commissioners via a virtual meeting, the CM called for replication of the Dharavi model elsewhere in the state to control the viral outbreak. "Care should be taken to ensure that new containment zones do not get created," he said.
The WHO recently praised the successful containment of the coronavirus spread in Dharavi, a major slum pocket in Mumbai. The CM also asked officials to appoint auditors for COVID hospitals to ensure that patients are not fleeced.
He also told them to ensure that adequate facilities are made available at institutional quarantine centres in every district.
The CM called for monitoring the implementation of the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Aarogya scheme and availability of beds in hospitals.
"At present, 540 patients are on ventilator support in the state," he said, adding that every district will now have a nodal testing officer.
The government has decided to ramp up rapid antigen tests along with swab collection. The CM said Rs 2,000 will be given to every plasma donor and told officials to create awareness among people.
BMC commissioner I S Chahal, who attended the meeting, suggested setting up of a unified command centre for the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) where information about all facilities will be made available. He also suggested computerisation of bed management.
The MMR has been witnessing a spike in new cases. The commissioner said asymptomatic patients need not be hospitalised so that beds remain available for the needy
Thackeray said the period of lockdown, which is place in municipal corporations, should be utilised for contact tracing and bringing down mortality rate.
"Lockdown shouldn't be imposed under pressure. Impose it only if you are confidant that it will help containing the pandemic. Coronavirus should not reach rural areas from urban spots," the CM said.
Health minister Rajesh Tope and medical education Minister Amit Deshmukh also attended the meeting.