PM Modi reviews state of hospitals amid rise in COVID-19 cases

This review meeting comes against the backdrop of a spike in Influenza cases in the country and a rise in COVID-19 cases in the past two weeks.

Published: 23rd March 2023 07:46 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd March 2023 07:46 AM   |  A+A-

PM Narendra Modi chairs a COVID-19 review meeting amid rise in cases, in New Delhi, March. 22, 2023. (Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: As COVID-19 and influenza cases are seeing a surge in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday held a high-level review meeting and directed hospitals to conduct regular mock drills to ensure they are prepared for all emergencies.

Highlighting that COVID-19 is far from over, the PM emphasised on following appropriate behaviour, including wearing of masks in hospital premises by both patients and health workers. He also advised senior citizens and those with comorbidities to wear masks when in a crowded area.

His directions came at a high-level meeting to assess the COVID-19 and Influenza-related preparedness of health infrastructure and logistics, the status of the vaccination campaign, the emergence of new COVID-19 variants and Influenza types and their public health implications.

This review meeting comes against the backdrop of a spike in Influenza cases in the country and a rise in COVID-19 cases in the past two weeks. “The PM highlighted that COVID-19 pandemic is far from over and there is a need to monitor the status across the country on a regular basis,” said a statement issued by the union health ministry.

India has been witnessing a slight rise in new Covid-19 cases with average daily cases reported as 888 and weekly positivity reported as 0.98 per cent in the week ending March 22. However, 1.08 lakh daily average cases have been reported globally during the same week.

For the past few months, India is reporting a high number of Influenza-like illnesses, especially H1N1 (Swine flu) and H3N2 (Influenza A virus subtype), and Severe Acute Respiratory Infections (SARI) cases.  Two deaths were reported in the country due to influenza caused by the H3N2 virus. PM Modi directed officials for the effective monitoring of these cases and oversee that testing for Influenza, Coronavirus and Adenovirus are being followed up with states.

The Prime Minister was informed about the monitoring and availability and prices of 20 main Covid drugs, 12 other drugs, 8 buffer drugs and 1 influenza drug, the statement said.

The meeting was attended by Principal Secretary to PM PK Mishra, Member (Health) NITI Aayog Dr V K Paul, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, Advisor PMO Amit Khare, and other senior officials.


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