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COVID scare: Centre to convene meeting with Kerala today

Though the COVID cases are rising, the Kerala government will inform the Centre today that the situation is under control and more tests are being conducted in the state. The state health department has suggested that masks should be used in hospitals.

COVID scare: Centre to convene meeting with Kerala today anr
First Published Dec 20, 2023, 8:32 AM IST

Thiruvananthapuram: The state will inform the Central government that the spread of COVID is under control on Wednesday. The state health minister Veena George will brief about the situation in Kerala in the meeting convened by the Union Ministry today. Kerala assesses that there is no cause for concern despite an increase in COVID-19 cases. After the Omicron variant is reported, the state government will inform the Centre that the precautionary measures have been strengthened and the hospital systems are ready.

The state health department has suggested that masks should be used in hospitals. It was proposed to set up isolation wards on a district basis to ensure testing of those with symptoms. Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram districts, where the number of patients is increasing, should be given special attention. After the Omicron variant was reported, the Directorate of Health prepared a special report. The health department explains that the high numbers in Kerala are due to more tests being done.

The Health Department has also directed to open a special isolation ward in hospitals in Thiruvananthapuram. A nodal officer should be made responsible for the coordination of activities.  Medicines and other materials required for the isolation ward should be procured from Thiruvananthapuram General Hospital. It was proposed to set up 10 beds for pregnant women who are infected with COVID-19 and separate beds for children under 12 years of age at Iranimuttom CHC.
On Monday (Dec 18), the state reported fresh 115 cases of COVID-19, taking the active cases to 1,749. Following the surge in the viral infections, the Centre issued guidelines to the state the other day. It is advised to be extremely cautious in case of rising covid cases. The recommendations are that testing should be ensured, samples confirming the disease should be sent for genetic sequencing, and the possibility of spreading the disease should be avoided in anticipation of the festive season. 

According to the letter sent by the Central Health Secretary to the Chief Secretaries strictly adhere to the revised COVID standards and strengthen preventive measures by involving the Central and State Governments including private hospitals. Disease information should be shared accurately. Social distancing, hygiene, wearing a mask, increasing the number of tests reminding people to take precautionary measures, or strengthening awareness have to be followed.

For the first time in the country, the JN.1 variant of COVID-19 was confirmed in Kerala the other day. In the last few weeks, there has been a significant rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in Kerala. About 90 percent of the active cases in the country are in Kerala. At the same time, Kerala is also the state that conducts the most COVID tests in the country.

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