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Centre issues fresh guidelines as COVID-19 pandemic makes way to rural India


With the COVID-19 pandemic gradually making inroads in small towns and rural areas, the Union government on Sunday issued fresh guidelines to contain the spread of the virus. Notably, the development comes a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a review meeting called for strengthening the health infrastructure in rural areas along with door-to-door testing and increased surveillance.

The new guidelines have asked the state governments and local authorities to focus on village-level surveillance, teleconsultation with community health officers and training in rapid antigen testing.

The guidelines suggest, “Symptomatic cases can be triaged at village level by teleconsultation with community health officers, and cases with comorbidity/low oxygen saturation should be sent to higher centres.” Also, it has been suggested that the authorities should try to do contact tracing as far as possible.

A home isolation kit shall be provided to all active cases. Each kit must include medicines like paracetamol, ivermectin, cough syrup, and multivitamins, besides a detailed pamphlet indicating the precautions to be taken, a proforma to monitor the patient’s condition, contact details in case major symptoms showing up or deterioration of health.

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While asserting that only a few cases require hospitalisation, the Centre in its guideline has also stressed the importance of monitoring of oxygen saturation level of COVID patients.

COVID-19 situation in India

The health ministry on Sunday informed that over 3.11 lakh fresh cases of COVID-19 have been reported in India in the past 24 hours. The addition of the fresh cases has taken the COVID-19 case tally past 2.46 crore.

Also, 4,077 COVID-19 related deaths were reported by the ministry during this period. The addition of the fresh fatalities has taken India’s death toll due to the deadly virus to 2,70,284.

Of the over 2.46 crore coronavirus cases reported so far, over 36.18 lakh are active cases of the virus. It is 14.66 per cent of the total caseload. Interestingly, over 2.07 crore cases have recovered from the viral infection so far.


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