Jammu: A visiting team of the Union health ministry on Sunday called for 100 percent house-to-house survey, contact tracing and increasing testing, especially using rapid antigen test (RAT) kits, to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the Jammu region.
The four-member team headed by National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) director SK Singh was discussing with senior administrative officers the steps to be taken for containment and control of the deadly infection which has witnessed a spike, especially in the Jammu region over the past month.
Reviewing the measures through video conference meetings with district administration and health teams of six districts, including Samba, Ramban, Kishtwar, Kathua, Rajouri and Doda, the team highlighted the need for focus on the testing and surveillance of containment zones using door-to-door surveys.
Financial commissioner, health and medical education department, Atal Dullo was also present during the meeting, besides the other members of the central team, including NCDC joint director Kinnzin, AIIMS associate professor and pulmonologist Vijay Handa and Mahesh Waghmare, IDSP, New Delhi.
The team members urged the officials concerned to focus on influenza-like illness (ILI) / severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) cases, 100 per cent house-to-house survey, contact tracing and increasing the number of testing, especially with RAT.
The team suggested the measures to be implemented in the containment zones and asked them to involve ASHA and field health staff to identify ILI cases so that testing of all can be done. Door-to-door survey was suggested for identifying high risk persons like pregnant women or the elderly and those with co-morbidity.
The working of new government medical hospitals in Kathua, Rajouri and Doda was also reviewed.
Handa asked principals to focus on hospital infection control measures, donning/doffing and biomedical waste management. He also called for following SOPs by all the staff members, besides preparing and following the treatment protocols. The stakeholders were also urged to increase the number of isolation and ventilator beds so that patient referral from district hospitals to Jammu is reduced.