Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Wednesday reviewed the Covid-19 situation in the country in view of a sudden spurt in cases in some parts of the world, and directed officials to be alert and strengthen surveillance.
“In view of the rising cases of Covid-19 in some countries, reviewed the situation with experts and officials today. Covid is not over yet. I have directed all concerned to be alert and strengthen surveillance. We are prepared to manage any situation," Mandaviya said in a tweet.
Elaborating on the details of the meeting, Dr VK Paul, Member-Health of NITI Aayog, said that there’s no change with regard to aviation as of now.
He further advised people to continue using masks in a crowded space, indoors or outdoors. “This is all the more important for people with comorbidities or are of higher age," he added.
The key NITI Aayog member also appealed residents to get booster shots, especially senior citizens. “Only 27-28% of people have taken precaution dose. Precaution dose is mandated and guided to everyone," Paul said.
States/UTs have also been advised to send samples of all Covid-19 positive cases to INSACOG labs to facilitate tracking of new variants.
The secretaries of health, department of pharmaceuticals, department of biotechnology, Ayush, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director General Rajiv Bahl, Member (Health) of NITI Aayog Dr V K Paul and National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) Chairman Dr N K Arora attended the meeting among other officials.
In view of the rise in cases in Japan, the United States of America, Republic of Korea, Brazil and China the Union Health Ministry on Tuesday urged all states and Union territories to ramp up the whole genome sequencing of positive samples of Covid to keep track of emerging variants.
In a letter to states and UTs, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan had said such an exercise will enable timely detection of newer variants, if any, circulating in the country and will facilitate undertaking of requisite public health measures.
(With inputs from PTI)
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