New Delhi: Amidst spike in new cases in states such as Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and UTs of Delhi and Chandigarh, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Saturday (March 6, 2021) interacted with Health secretaries of these states and asked them to continue with the effective strategy of ‘Test Track & Treat’ that had yielded rich dividends at the height of the pandemic.
Districts in these states and UTs continue to be of concern as these are seeing a decrease in total tests being conducted, a low share of RT-PCR tests, an increase in weekly positivity and a low number of contact tracing of the COVID positive cases. These together can pose a high risk of transmission to the neighbouring States and UTs. Granular analysis of the COVID response in the districts was shared with the States/UTs for further action.
States were specifically asked to:
- Continue with the effective strategy of ‘Test Track & Treat’ that had yielded rich dividends at the height of the pandemic.
- Improve overall testing in districts reporting a reduction in testing
- Increase share of RT-PCR tests in districts dependent on high levels of antigen testing.
- Carry out an average close contact tracing of a minimum of 20 persons per positive case.
- Accelerate vaccination for priority population groups in districts reporting higher cases.
The states were also asked to collaborate with the private hospitals to open up vaccination time-table for a minimum of 15 days and a maximum of 28 days at a time. They have also been asked to actively watch out for super-spreading events and share their best practices in breaking the chain of transmission.