As country witnessed its biggest ever spike on Sunday with quite 5,000 cases being reported during a single day, it seems that worst is way from over. Though the health ministry officials are saying that numbers may continue with similar trends within the coming days, earlier assessment of AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria that the country may witness its peak in June/July remains haunting several minds. Going by the health ministry's indication, all planning and resources are being mobilized to handle that impending situation.
First, it had been the Tablighi Jamaat event and now an outsized scale of migration is giving a headache to the receiving states like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh , Odisha, Jharkhand, and West Bengal . UP and Bihar are the large receivers of migrants till now. UP alone received quite 7.60 lakh migrant labourers through 541 Shramik trains, ditch other modes of movements.
This sudden surge in Covid numbers has forced the Centre to guage , review, and redraft their strategy again. Even ICMR has changed its testing guidelines.
In the last two days, the govt has updated its containment plan for giant outbreaks. Assessment of the health ministry is that only 30 municipal areas are contributing 80 per cent of Covid numbers in states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh , Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu , and Telangana. Therefore, the govt machinery is additionally gearing up for the containment of the massive outbreaks, which includes:
Large outbreak defined as a neighborhood where there are 15 or more cases
Go for geographic quarantine which suggests near-absolute interruption of movement of individuals to and from a comparatively large define geographical area
A barrier erected round the focus of infection
To apply strict perimeter control
Active search of cases, early isolation, contact listing and tracking, quarantine and follow-up of contacts
Testing all suspect cases, symptomatic contacts, asymptomatic direct, high-risk contacts of a confirmed case
Clinical management supported the danger profile
Under perimeter control, the establishment of entry and exit points to be strictly maintained
No movement to be allowed apart from medical emergencies, essential goods, and services
No unchecked influx of population to be allowed and
People transiting to be recorded
A new buffer zone has been created within the new MHA guidelines. As per the health ministry, the buffer zone has been delineated around each containment zone and it should be properly defined by the district administration and native urban bodies.
The buffer zones are going to be primarily the areas wherein additional and focused attention is required to see the spread of the coronavirus to adjoining areas. As per the new advisory for effective containment, buffer zones got to be an outsized area.
As per the plan, the activities under the buffer zone include:
Enhanced passive surveillance for ILI/SARI through existing integrated disease surveillance program
Create community awareness on preventive measures
Cancel all mass gathering event, meeting publicly and personal places
Avoid public places
The health ministry also revised its cluster containment strategy. As per reports, to see local transmission, a cluster containment strategy are going to be initiated with active surveillance in containment zone like:
Contact tracing within and out of doors the containment zones
Expanding lab capacity for testing all suspect samples, close contacts, ILA/ SARI
Isolate all suspected and confirmed cases for clinical management
Intensive risk communication aside from strict social distancing and hygiene
Identification of area people volunteers to assist in surveillance, contact tracing
Extensive inter-personal and community-based communication
As per the health ministry, in 2009 during the H1N1 outbreak, it had been observed that well connected big cities with substantive population movement were reporting an outsized number of cases, whereas rural areas and smaller towns with a coffee population reported only a couple of cases.
But within the case of coronavirus, while the spread of this virus might be high, it's unlikely that it will be uniformly affecting all parts of the country.
But state machineries also are apprehensive that with an outsized scale of migration since May Day , the threat of the virus spreading in small towns and rural areas may go high. As per the health ministry officials, this involves a special ial approach to a different region of the country, while mounting a robust containment strategy.
With a bulk of Covid-19 cases coming from urban settlements, the govt has suggested deploying additional manpower in these areas and roping in local political and non secular leaders for communicating all aspects of coronavirus prevention measures as residents are "more inclined to trust them".
It has also decided to spot an "incident commander" in urban settlements, who are going to be tasked with planning, operation, logistics, and finance to implement an event Response System. The commander will report back to the world municipal commissioner.
With the growing coronavirus numbers in 30 municipal areas, an enormous challenge is more and more testing in these hotspots. As per information, the country also reached the milestone of 1 lakh testing each day . With the country has already conducted quite 22 lakh testing till now, the indication is that India is preparing for 10 lakh testing capacity by July this year. As experts have a special opinion about coronavirus's peak within the country, all preparatory indication shows that the govt is readying itself thereto big challenge.