Harsh Vardhan asks states to maintain vigil against coronavirus; no new cases in India

The Health Minister was also informed that several precautionary measures have been taken at the central level in coordination with ministries concerned.

Published: 21st February 2020 11:06 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st February 2020 11:06 PM   |  A+A-

Harsh Vardhan, Modi Cabinet

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan (File photo| PTI)


NEW DELHI: Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Friday urged states to keep high vigil against the novel coronavirus and asked them to continue raising public awareness for its prevention, even though no new case was reported in the country.

The minister reviewed the preparedness and actions taken so far to handle the situation arising out of the outbreak of novel coronavirus (COVID19) in China in a meeting here with senior ministry officials, according to a release.

He was informed that several precautionary measures have been taken at the central level in coordination with ministries concerned.

All states have been advised to accurately update information about screening and surveillance on a portal set up as a special web tool to monitor the cases on a real-time basis, the statement quoted Health Secretary Preeti Sudan as saying.

States and Union Territories have reported compliance to guidelines issued by the Centre and also that sufficient stocks of personal protection equipment including masks, gloves, goggles and shoe covers have been procured, she added.

Vardhan was also informed that the screening of passengers is being done at 21 airports, 12 major and 65 non-major seaports and border crossings.

In all 3,97,148 passengers from 3,835 flights have been screened so far.

As of now, 2,707 samples were examined of which only 3 earlier tested positive, all in Kerala, according to the statement.

All three patients have now been discharged from hospitals and are now in home isolation.

A total of 21,805 people are currently under community surveillance in 34 states and UTs through the Integrated Diseases Surveillance Programme (IDSP) network, the statement said.

All Indian evacuees from Wuhan have tested negative for COVID19 and have gone back to their homes from the quarantine facilities, it added.

"Dr Harsh Vardhan has urged all states again to keep high 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," according to the statement.

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