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Omicron in India: PM Modi expected to chair crucial meeting on Thursday

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan instructed states and union territories to "activate" war rooms to deal with the new threat in a letter to them.

Omicron in India PM Modi expected to chair crucial meeting on Thursday gcw
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New Delhi, First Published Dec 22, 2021, 12:10 PM IST
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi is slated to preside over a critical conference in India to assess the threat presented by the new COVID-19 version Omicron. So far, the nation has reported 213 cases of the novel COVID strain. Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan informed states and union territories that the new COVID strain is three times more transmissible than the Delta variant of coronavirus in response to the Omicron danger. Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan instructed states and union territories to "activate" war rooms to deal with the new threat in a letter to them.

The highest-ranking official in the Union Health Ministry encouraged states to 'adopt strategic interventions for containment such as implementation of night curfew, stringent supervision of big gatherings, limiting the number of weddings and funerals, as well as enhancing testing and surveillance.' Bhushan urged states and UTs to continue analysing minor trends and spikes in COVID cases and to maintain rigorous and timely containment measures at the district and local levels.

While urging governments to keep a close eye on emerging COVID cases, Bhushan stated in his letter that at the district level, there should be a constant review of emerging data regarding the population affected by COVID-19, geographical spread, hospital infrastructure and its utilisation, manpower, notifying containment zones, enforcing containment zone perimeters, and so on. This evidence should serve as the foundation for successful decision making at the district level.

Also Read | Omicron in India: Cases touch 200 as Delhi, Maharashtra remain worst-affected states

"Such an approach guarantees that illness is confined at the local level itself before spreading to other sections of the state," according to the letter. The Centre also requested that states and UTs conduct door-to-door case searches and test all vulnerable individuals.

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