Omicron Threat: PM Modi Stresses On COVID Appropriate Behaviour In High-Level Review Meet, Says Fight Against Pandemic Not Over

by Swarajya Staff - Dec 24, 2021 09:00 AM +05:30 IST
Omicron Threat: PM Modi Stresses On COVID Appropriate Behaviour In High-Level Review Meet, Says Fight Against Pandemic Not OverPM Modi (Pic Via Twitter)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday (23 December) chaired a high-level meetingto review the status of Covid-19 and Omicron, the new Variant of Concern (VOC), and preparedness of health systems across the country.

During the meeting, the officials briefed PM Modi about the emerging scenario globally driven by the new variant, with an overview of surge in cases in countries having high vaccination coverage and presence of Omicron variant.

He was also apprised of the technical brief and priority actions recommended by WHO in the context of Omicron, said a PMO release.

"A snapshot of the status of COVID19 and Omicron in the country, including states reporting a higher number of cases, districts reporting higher positivity, and higher number of clusters was presented to PM. The details of the Omicron cases reported in the country, including their travel history, vaccination status, and recovered status was also presented," the PMO said.

He was also briefed about the various actions taken since 25 November when the first advisory of the Union Health Ministry was shared with the states.

PM Modi was also informed about the revised travel advisory for international passengers, review meetings with states and UTs on Covid-19 public health response measures, ramping up vaccination, installation of Oxygen supply equipments, etc.

After the presentation, PM Modi directed the officials for maintaining a high level of vigil and alertness at all levels. He directed the Centre to work in close coordination with the states to support their efforts of public health measures of containment and management under the ‘Whole of Government’ approach.

The strategy of the Centre for proactive, focussed, collaborative and cooperative fight against the pandemic should guide all our future actions, PM Modi directed the officials.

PM Modi said that in view of the new variant, we should be 'Satark' (Alert) and 'Saavdhan' (Cautious). The fight against the pandemic is not over, he said, and the need for continued adherence to COVID safe behaviour is of paramount importance even today.

PM Modi directed the officials to ensure that the health systems in the states, beginning from the district level, are strengthened to meet any challenge posed by the new variant.

It is important for States to ensure that the Oxygen supply equipments are installed and fully functional, he instructed the officials.

He directed the officials to work with the states on a regular basis and review the status of preparedness of various components of health infrastructure including training and capacity building of human resources, timely availability of ambulances, readiness of states to operationalise COVID facilities for institutional quarantining, and effective and supervised monitoring of those in home isolation.

He also directed officials for effective use of IT tools for tele-medicine and tele-consultation.

Heightened and close monitoring of emerging clusters and hotspots through and active, prompt and effective surveillance should continue, he said.

PM Modi also instructed the officials to send a good number of positive samples for genome sequencing to INSACOG Labs in a prompt manner. He also directed the officials for accelerating the testing to ensure quick identification of cases for timely containment and treatment.

Focus should also be on effective contact tracing for curbing spread of the transmission, he said.

PM Modi said that the Centre should send teams to states with low vaccination, rising cases, insufficient health infrastructure to assist them improve the situation.

During the meeting, PM Modi was also apprised of the progress in vaccination across the country. He was informed that more than 88 per cent of the eligible population is administered the first dose of COVID19 vaccine and more than 60 per cent of the eligible population has received the second dose.

Officials briefed PM Modi that the door-to-door Har Ghar Dastak vaccination campaign to mobilise and vaccinate people has been able to motivate people to take the COVID-19 vaccine, and has shown encouraging results in boosting vaccine coverage.

PM Modi directed that states need to ensure that the eligible population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

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