Health secretary Rajesh Bhushan has written to eight states with high positivity rates, urging them to take immediate action to bring down cases and also share details of the actions taken as per the Disaster Management Act.
The states that have received the communication sent out by health ministry are Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Kerala, Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Odisha and Sikkim. These states have the maximum number of districts with above 10% positivity.
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“Although the trajectory of daily new cases has come down substantially in the country, there is need for continued monitoring of weekly case positivity, as well as case trajectory in each district to identify any early warning signals of spread of infection,” Bhushan said in his letters to the chief secretaries.
For instance, the letter to chief secretary of Arunachal Pradesh — which has the highest 19 out of its 25 districts reporting over 10% positivity rate — pointed out the concern that the state reported a weekly positivity rate of 16.2% during June 28-July 4. The positivity rate in the state has been increasing over the last four weeks, Bhushan said. The state reported 12% rise in weekly new cases.
Similarly, Bhushan’s letter to Jishnu Bharua, chief secretary of Assam, expressed concern that 29 of 33 districts in the state reported more than 100 new cases in the week ended July 4.
The Centre emphasised the need for stricter containment measures, increasing in testing, and ramping up vaccination. “It is imperative to note that containment is the most crucial strategy of flattening the curve. It is critical to strengthen the for prompt contact-tracing and quarantine of all cases,” the Centre’s communication said.
With 60% of the districts across India having case positivity rate of over 10% located in the northeast, home secretary Ajay Bhalla on Wednesday asked them to follow the five-fold strategy of ‘test-track-treat-vaccinate and adherence to Covid-appropriate behaviour’.
At a meeting chaired by him, the current status and trends of active cases, case fatality rate (CFR), case positivity rate (CPR) and vaccination status was discussed. It was noted that out of 73 districts in the country with CPR above 10 %, 46 districts are in the northeast, where strict containment measures need to be taken.
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