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Centre lauds Karnataka's efforts to curtail spread of COVID-19: Health Ministry

The centre said that the Karnataka state government has "effectively trace and track each case thereby successfully containing the spread of the epidemic".

Published: 19th June 2020 06:46 PM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2020 06:05 AM   |  A+A-

BSY, karnataka govt, B S Yediyurappa

Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa wears a face mask during 'Mask Day' rally amid the ongoing nationwide lockdown in Bengaluru. (Photo | Nagaraja Gadekal, EPS)

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Karnataka’s technology-based approach in managing the Covid-19 crisis has earned it recognition from the Union Government. Living up to its reputation of being the IT capital of the country, Karnataka’s use of web-based applications, distant monitoring mechanisms, tech-savvy contact tracing and citizen survey initiatives have caught the Centre’s attention so much so that the Union Health Ministry has asked other states to emulate such best practices.

The Centre on Friday appreciated Karnataka for its ‘Whole of Government’ approach and use of technology in Covid-19 management. The Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting put out a statement asking other states to adopt such measures to their local context and replicate them for better management of the pandemic.

The appreciation comes barely days after BJP national president J P Nadda and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in succession lauded the state’s use of technology in tracing, monitoring and assisting citizens as part of Covid-19 containment measures.“Karnataka’s management of #COVID19 is lauded by Union Govt as a role model. At the core of our success is Good Governance with well-crafted policies & meticulous implementation using technology. Congrats to our Corona Warriors & Team Karnataka!” (sic) tweeted Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa.

Widened definition of ‘Contact’ gets praise

“KARNATAKA has widened the definition of ‘Contact’ to include both high-risk as well as low-risk contacts as defined by the Government of India. The number of primary and secondary contacts in Karnataka were meticulously traced and put under strict quarantine. More than 10,000 well-trained field staff carry out specific responsibilities for contact tracing as per the detailed SOP designed by the state which prescribes step-by-step actions to be performed by each designated person. The Contact Tracing Mobile App and Web Application are being used to overcome the huge quantum of work, genuine forgetfulness of the positive persons and attempts to hide facts due to various reasons,” the Union Health Ministry statement said.

Technological interventions like the Seva Sindhu portal, Quarantine Watch and Apthamitra apps were hailed by the Centre as much as physical initiatives like physical and phone-based household survey which has covered more than 1.5 crore households, mobile squads for enforcement of home quarantine through community participation and field visits by ASHA workers. “Because of the huge numbers and the need for diligent monitoring of quarantined persons, use of technology was necessary.

Doing it manually was impossible. The system was overwhelmed and, as they say, necessity is the mother of invention and we adapted. From the very beginning, we worked together with technocrats for development of apps, with doctors for clinical management, with epidemiologists to understand epidemiological aspects of the disease, etc. This experience has been quite fulfilling,” said Jawaid Akhtar, Additional Chief Secretary, Health and Family Welfare Services. He also expressed happiness over the team’s work receiving due recognition.



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