Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Wednesday chaired a review meeting of top health officials and experts on the Covid situation in the country. He directed officials to be alert and strengthen surveillance amid a surge in coronavirus cases globally.
“COVID is not over yet. I have directed all concerned to be alert and strengthen surveillance. We are prepared to manage any situation,” tweeted Union Health Minister after the meeting.
Reports of the sudden rise in Covid cases in China, Japan, the US and Brazil among other countries have surfaced.
Ahead of review meeting that commenced at 11:30 am, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Bharati Pravin Pawar said the meeting had been convened to discuss the situation of Covid-19 in other countries and what needed to be done for India.
Dr VK Paul, Member-Health, NITI Aayog, at the end of Wednesday’s meeting said: “Only 27-28 per cent of people have taken precaution dose. We appeal to others, especially senior citizens, to take precaution dose. Precaution dose is mandated and guided to everyone.”
He also urged people to use mask in crowded spaces, indoors or outdoors. “This is all the more important for people with comorbidities or are of higher age,” Paul said.
Secretaries of Health, Ayush, the department of pharmaceuticals and department of biotechnology, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director General Rajiv Bahl, Member (Health) of NITI Aayog V K Paul and National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) Chairman N L Arora, Secretary in Department of biotechnology Dr Rajesh Gokhale and MoHFW DGHS Dr Atul Goel attended the meeting.
The Union Health Ministry has requested states and UTs to send samples of all Covid-19 positive cases to INSACOG labs to track new variants, if any. The Health Ministry and INSACOG are keeping a sharp watch on the situation.
“All states are requested to ensure that as far as possible samples of all positive cases, on a daily basis, are sent to the designated INSACOG Genome Sequencing Laboratories (IGSLs) that are mapped to the States and UTs,” said the Union Health Secretary.