GUWAHATI: In the wake of the spike in COVID-19 cases, the Assam government has decided to conduct surveillance at all villages in the state.
Through the "Community Surveillance Programme", the government will try to detect unreported cases of SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Infections) and ILI (Influenza-like Illness) and treat symptomatic minor flu cases at the houses of patients.
"We will also strengthen the surveillance for other diseases associated with fever-like Japanese Encephalitis, malaria, dengue etc.
"The programme targets to cover more than 25,000 villages. In the last three days, 6,809 villages have been covered, which is around 27% of the state’s total number of census villages," Pomi Baruah, who is the Deputy Secretary in the Health Department and Officer on Special Duty, National Health Mission, told this newspaper.
As part of the surveillance, the government wants to reach each and every individual in the state, she added.
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Altogether 1,800 doctors, 9,000 auxiliary nurse midwives, 3,000 multipurpose health workers, 650 community health officers, 1,100 lab technicians and 30,000 accredited social health activists (ASHAs) are involved in the mission.
The activity starts with ASHAs who are mandated to visit door to door for checking SARI/ILI and fever-related cases. They will prepare line listing of such cases which will be shared with the Community Surveillance Teams (CSTs).
The members of CSTs will visit the houses identified to interact with the suspected cases, confirm the findings, counsel patients including family members and nearby community members.
Based on the advice of CSTs, lab technicians will collect swab or blood samples and send them for testing.
The district magistrates will monitor, supervise and coordinate the activities through the district task force mechanism.
The government appealed to people to cooperate with health workers and provide them with specific health details while they visit their homes.
Till Sunday, Assam recorded 62 COVID-19 cases including one death.