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Test-track-treat: Centre’s new guidelines to states

The MHA said that containment zones shall be carefully demarcated by the district authorities at the micro level taking into consideration the guidelines prescribed by the Union Health Ministry.

Published: 23rd March 2021 07:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 24th March 2021 09:28 AM   |  A+A-

Health workers prepare to takes swab samples to test for COVID-19 at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus in Mumbai. (Photo | AP)

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  Amid the rise in Covid-19 cases in several states, the Union Home Ministry on Tuesday issued new guidelines for effective control of infections, directing all states and UTs to increase “test-track-treat”. 

In the guidelines for April, the MHA  said keeping in view the renewed spike of Covid-19 cases, states should enhance the proportion of RT-PCR tests, strictly enforce test-track-treat protocol and speed up the pace of vaccination to cover all priority groups. The new positive cases need to be isolated or quarantined at the earliest and provide timely treatment, it said.  

The states and UTs should enforce the test-track-treat protocol in all parts of the country, ensure observance of Covid-19-appropriate behaviour by everyone and, scale up the vaccination drive to cover all the target groups, the guidelines stated.

All contacts have to be traced at the earliest, and similarly isolated and quarantined, it said. The MHA said based on the positive cases and tracking of their contacts, containment zones shall be carefully demarcated by the district authorities at the micro-level taking into consideration the guidelines prescribed by the Health Ministry. The states and UTs where the proportion of RT-PCR tests is less should rapidly increase it to reach the prescribed level of 70% or more of total tests.

The MHA also gave states and UTs the liberty to impose local curbs saying the authorities, based on their assessment of the situation, may impose local restrictions at district or sub-district and city or ward level, to contain the spread of Covid. 

It said the government has launched the world’s largest vaccination drive and though the drive is proceeding smoothly, the pace is uneven across different states and UTs and, the slow pace of vaccination in some states and UTs is a “matter of concern”.

Suspension of scheduled int’l flights extended
The suspension of scheduled international passenger flights has been extended till April 30, the DGCA said on Tuesday. “However, international scheduled flights may be allowed on selected routes by the competent authority on a case-to-case basis,” it added. Scheduled international passenger services have been suspended since March 23, 2020



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