New Delhi: Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Monday said that Covid is not over yet and there are reports of rising cases in some states.
“It is important at this time to be alert and not forget Covid Appropriate Behaviour (CAB) such as wearing masks and maintaining physical distance to prevent spread of the infection,” he said while chairing a virtual meeting with Health Ministers and senior officials of states and union territories (UTs) to review the progress of vaccination exercise Har Ghar Dastak 2.0 campaign.
Highlighting increased case positivity in some districts in states and reduced Covid-19 testing, Mandaviya stated that increased and timely testing will enable early identification of Covid cases and help to curb the spread of the infection among the community. He urged the states and UTs to continue and strengthen surveillance and focus on genome sequencing for identifying new mutants and variants in the country.
He stated that the five-fold strategy of Test, Track, Treat, Vaccination & Adherence to Covid Appropriate Behaviou needs to be continued and monitored by the states and UTs. The states were also advised to focus on implementing the Operational Guidelines for Revised Surveillance Strategy for Covid-19 which focuses on surveillance of incoming international travellers and surveillance through health facilities, labs, community etc.
Stressing on the importance of Covid vaccination among the vulnerable age groups, he urged the state health ministers to personally review the status and progress of the special month-long drive Har Ghar Dastak 2.0 campaign which started on June 1.
“Let us accelerate our efforts to identify all beneficiaries in the 12-17 age group for the 1st and 2nd doses, so they can attend schools with the protection of the vaccine”, he said. He also advised the states for focussed coverage of 12-17 age groups through school-based campaigns along with targeted coverage of non-school going children during the summer vacation.
He added that the population group of above 60 years of age is a vulnerable category and needs to be protected with the precaution dose.
“Our healthcare workers are going door-to-door to ensure that the vulnerable population is administered the precaution dose,” he said, urging the states to also review administration of the precaution dose to 18-59 years age group with the private hospitals on a regular basis. “Adequate vaccine doses are available across the country. Let us ensure accelerated coverage of Covid vaccination during the second phase of the Har Ghar Dastak campaign,” he stressed. (IANS)