Coronavirus: 21,805 under surveillance, Health Minister Vardhan reviews COVID-19 situation

New Delhi: Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, undertook a review of the status of preparedness and actions taken so far in handling the situation arising out of outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), with senior officials of the Ministry, here today. All Indian evacuees from Wuhan have tested negative for COVID-19 and have gone back to their homes from the quarantine facilities. 21,805 persons are presently under community surveillance in 34 States & UTs through the Integrated Diseases Surveillance Programme (IDSP) network.

The Union Health Minister was informed that various precautionary measures have been undertaken in close coordination with the concerned ministries at the central level. Secretary (HFW), Preeti Sudan, also informed that the States have been advised to regularly update the requisite information pertaining to screening and surveillance accurately and in a timely manner on the web portal which has been put in place as a special surveillance web tool to monitor the cases on a real-time basis at the national level.

HFW Secretary Sudan also added that States & UTs have reported that the protocols and guidelines issued by the Central Government are being followed to avoid any eventuality. She shared that sufficient stocks for personal protection equipment and masks have been procured, and that preparedness of various States & UTs is being regularly reviewed through video conferences with them and the concerned Central Government Ministries & Departments.

Harsh Vardhan was also informed that, at present, the screening of passengers is being done in all 21 airports, 12 major and 65 non-major seaports and border crossings. In all 3,835 flights and 3,97,148 passengers have been screened so far. As of now, 2,707 samples have been tested of which only 3 samples had earlier tested positive (Kerala) and all the three patients have been discharged from the hospitals and are now in home isolation.

Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has urged all states again to keep vigil even though no new positive case has been reported from the country. He also advised the States to continue enhancing the awareness amongst the masses for prevention through personal hygiene.

The total death toll in China stands at 2,236 with 118 more deaths reported today, mostly from the hard-hit Hubei province, while the overall confirmed infection cases have climbed to 75,465, Chinese health officials said on Friday.

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The ID Staff

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