Cabinet Secretary reviews preparedness to deal with evolving situation of Coronavirus

100% declaration by incoming air passengers mandatory in J&K

JAMMU, MARCH 03: Cabinet Secretary, Rajiv Gauba today held a Video-Conference with Chief Secretaries and Health Secretaries of States/UTs to review their preparedness to deal with evolving situation of Coronavirus amid mounting concerns over rapid spread worldwide. Union Health Secretary and other senior functionaries of Government of India also participated in the meeting.

Chief Secretary J&K, B V R Subrahmanyam along with senior officers from administration and Health Department attended the meeting on behalf of Government of Jammu and Kashmir.

Cabinet Secretary, while interacting with Chief Secretaries/ Health secretaries of the states/ UTs sought details from them with regard to the level of preparedness and arrangements put in place for containment and management of the infection.

The States/UTs have been asked to scrupulously follow the guidelines issued by Union Health Ministry with regard to surveillance and contact tracing, surveillance at entry points, sample collection, packaging and transport, clinical management protocol and infection prevention and control in healthcare facilities.

Cabinet Secretary asked the Chief Secretaries to review, assess and monitor the arrangements in the States/UTs, and ensure adequate quarantine, isolation facilities and equipment are available to deal with suspected or confirmed cases as per the mandated protocol.

Further, it was informed that filling up of self-declaration forms at the point of entries including airports has been made mandatory to record travel history of the passengers and contact, if any, with a person from any of the severely affected countries.

With an emphasis to break the chain of transmission early detection of cases is necessary. States/UTs were also briefed on cluster containment strategy. It was also stressed to actively involve district administrations to disseminate information at the community level through village level functionaries etc.

The States/UTs have been asked to review their preparedness on daily basis, identify gaps and strengthen hospital preparedness by having isolation and critical care facilities, linkages with VRDL network laboratories and adherence to infection prevention and control guidelines. The Health Secretaries were also advised to coordinate with all major private and other hospitals so as to have isolation wards and all necessary support required at such hospitals to deal with suspected cases.

A detailed presentation was made by the Health Ministry briefing about the steps that have been taken by Government of India and further what needs to be done by State/UT Governments.

Meanwhile, in Jammu and Kashmir all systems are in a state of high alert and back-up facilities are in place to deal with any eventuality. So far no positive case has been detected in the Union Territory. Around 201 people have identified with history of travel to affected countries or those who have had contact with persons from such countries. 100% declaration of all incoming passengers has been introduced at Srinagar & Jammu Airports as a precautionary measure. Medical teams have been deployed at both the Airports in Jammu and Srinagar along with other logistical arrangements at the health care facilities. Advisories have been issued to persons who have travel history to severely affected countries viz China, Japan, Iran or South Asia to report to the nearest health care facility in case of any symptoms. Isolation facilities have been identified in Divisional as well as the District Level and RRTs (Rapid Response Teams) have been nominated to face any eventuality. Coordinated efforts have been formulated between various Central Agencies and the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.