PIB’S DAILY BULLETIN ON COVID-19

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(Contains Press releases concerning Covid-19, issued in last 24 hours, inputs from PIB Field Offices and Fact checks undertaken by PIB)

 

India continues to post very high number of daily recoveries. The continuous upward trajectory of India’s Recovery Rate has touched 78.28% today. 79,292 have recovered and discharged in the last 24 hours. The total recovered cases stand at 38,59,399. The gap between Recovered cases and Active cases has crossed 28 lakh today (28,69,338). The total number of active cases in the country stands at 9,90,061 as on date. Close to half (48.8%) of the Active Cases are concentrated in 3 States: Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Kerala and Telangana   contribute close to a quarter (24.4%) of the Active Cases. Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu contribute 60.35% of the total Active Cases and are also reporting close to 60% (59.42%) of the total recovered cases.1,054 case fatalities have been reported in the past 24 hours. Of the total deaths, nearly 69% are concentrated in five State/UTs of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Delhi. More than 37% of deaths reported are from Maharashtra (29,894 deaths).The State reported 34.44% of the deaths in the last 24 hours (363 deaths).

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The Union Health Ministry held a virtual meeting yesterday where Union Health Secretary, Secretary DPIIT, Secretary Pharmaceuticals and Secretary Textiles participated. State Health Secretaries and Industries Secretaries of 29 states/UTs were also present virtually. The aim of the meeting was to ensure adequate Oxygen availability in all healthcare facilities in these States& unrestricted intra as well as inter State movement of oxygen. States were asked to assess the need and then to press more tankers into action, repurpose similar vehicles for carrying oxygen, take steps to reduce their turnaround time so that patients do not face any lack of oxygen. The States were specifically advised to ensure among other things, facility wise/hospital wise oxygen inventory management and advance planning for timely replenishment so that there are no stockout.

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Prime Minister inaugurates various projects under ‘NamamiGange’ yojana and ‘AMRUT’ yojana in Bihar

The Prime Minister Shri NarendraModi inaugurated various projects under ‘NamamiGange’ Yojana and ‘AMRUT’ Yojana in Bihar. Four schemes inaugurated today include sewerage treatment plants at Beur and Karam-Leechak in Patna city, as well as water-related projects in Siwan and Chhapra under the ‘AMRUT’ Yojana. Apart from this, foundation stones were laid today for water supply projects in Munger and Jamalpur and River Front Development Scheme under NamamiGange in Muzaffarpur. The Prime Minister said that even during the times of Corona, the work on various development projects progressed uninterrupted in Bihar. The Prime Minister lauded the contribution of the Engineers to the development of the country on the occasion of Engineer’s Day, which is celebrated in the memory of India’s pioneering modern civil engineer, Sir M. Visvesvaraya. Shri Modi said Bihar also significantly contributed towards development of the country by producing millions of engineers.

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COVID-19 Fatalities amongst Healthcare Workers

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare provided guideline on Infection Prevention and Control practices to the State Governments. Training was conducted for all the States in the month of March 2020. Training on Infection Prevention and Control was also made available for all categories of healthcare workers on the iGoT platform.An advisory for managing health care workers working in COVID and Non-COVID areas of the hospital was issued by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on 18th June, 2020.Guidelines on rational use of PPEs for hospital and community settings were issued on 24.03.2020. These guidelines followed a risk based approach and recommended type of PPE that needs to be used in high and low risk areas.The healthcare workers were provided with hydroxychloroquine for prophylaxis and prevention of infection.The package of Rs 15000 crores (USD 2 Billion) under “India COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health System Preparedness Package” has been approved by the Cabinet on 22nd April, 2020. The States were supported with 9.81 Crore tablets of HCQ and 28,476 ventilators supplied to States/UTs.States/UTs were provided with 3.05 crore N-95 masks and 1.2 Crore PPE kits.Total 155 Health workers died due to COVID-19 as per PMGKP: Insurance Scheme.The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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India would be following a scenario based approach for the following possible scenarios: (i) Travel related case reported in India, (ii) Local transmission of COVID-19, (iii) Large outbreaks amenable to containment, (iv) Wide-spread community Transmission of COVID-19 disease and (v) India becomes endemic for COVID-19. Currently many areas are experiencing large outbreaks amenable to containment. Hence a containment strategy is being followed by Government of India. Government has succeeded to a great extent in controlling the aggressive progression of COVID-19 in the country. India has recorded 3,328 cases and 55 deaths per million population, which is one of the lowest in the world as compared to similarly affected countries. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India followed a graded approach for expanding COVID-19 dedicated hospital infrastructure. The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today. 

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There is provision made under ‘Pradhan Mantri GaribKalyan Package’ for Health Workers fighting COVID-19. This is a Central Sector scheme. The scheme provides an insurance cover of Rs. 50 lakh to healthcare providers, including community health workers, who may have to be in direct contact and care of COVID-19 patients and who may be at risk of being impacted by this. It will also include accidental loss of life on account of contracting COVID-19. The scheme also covers private hospital staff/ retired/volunteer/ local urban bodies/contract/daily wage/ ad-hoc/outsourced staff requisitioned by States/ Central hospitals/autonomous hospitals of Central/States/UTs, AIIMS & INIs/ hospitals of Central Ministries drafted for COVID-19 related responsibilities. The insurance provided under this scheme would be over and above any other insurance cover being availed of by the beneficiary. The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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Realizing the impact that COVID-19 may have on the mental health of the people, including children, the Government has taken a number of initiatives to provide psychosocial support during COVID-19. These initiatives include: Setting up of a 24/7 helpline to provide psychosocial support, by mental health professionals, to the entire affected population, divided into different target groups viz children, adult, elderly, women and healthcare workers, issuance of guidelines/ advisories on management of mental health issues, catering to different segments of the society, advocacy through various media platforms in the form of creative and audio-visual materials on managing stress and anxiety, and promoting an environment of support and care for all, Issuance of detailed guidelines by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru- “Mental Health in the times of COVID-19 Pandemic – Guidance for General Medical and Specialized Mental Health Care Settings’and online capacity building of health workers by NIMHANS in providing psychosocial support and training through (iGOT)-Diksha platform. The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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Medical education of Indian System of Medicine and Homoeopathy to get revolutionary revamp

With the passage of two important bills of the Ministry of AYUSH by the Parliament, the country is all set to bring revolutionary reforms in the medical education of Indian System of Medicine and Homoeopathy. The National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill, 2020 and the National Commission for Homoeopathy Bill 2020 were passed in LokSabha on 14th September 2020. These twin bills seek to replace the existing Indian Medicine Central Council Act, 1970 and the Homoeopathy Central Council Act, 1973. Getting the approval of the Parliament for these bills is a landmark achievement in the history of AYUSH. The enactment of the said Bills will revamp the existing Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) and Central Council of Homoeopathy.

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Yoga in Helping Recovery of COVID-19 Patients

The Central Council for Research in Yoga & Naturopathy (CCRYN), has undertaken a research project to verify the efficacy of Yoga in facilitating early recovery of COVID – 19 patients in collaboration with Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital, Delhi, AIIMS Delhi, AIIMS Rishikesh and RML Hospital, Delhi. This information was given by the Minister of Health and Family Welfare Dr. Harsh Vardhan in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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Ministry of Health & Family Welfare was following the evolving situation in China, when WHO India alerted our country on 6th January, 2020 about outbreak of pneumonia of unknown origin in Wuhan city of China. The Joint Monitoring Group under Director General of Health Services met on 8th January, 2020 to review the evolving situation in China and deliberated on public health preparedness and response strategies for the same.Before the nationwide lockdown, a series of actions were undertaken in a pro-active, graded and pre-emptive manner based on the evolving scenario.India took adequate action for screening, surveillance, contact tracing of international travellers from 18th January, 2020. Travel advisories were issued restricting inflow of international travellers.Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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While the Govt. and Industry are trying their best to make available a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19 at the earliest, it is difficult to comment on the exact timelines in view of various complex pathways involved in vaccine development.The Government has constituted a high-level National Expert Group on vaccine administration for COVID-19. The committee is addressing issues related to vaccine delivery, selection of suitable vaccines, procurement, prioritization of groups, logistics: Cold chain requirements, finance and National/International equity.Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) has granted test license permission for manufacture of COVID-19 Vaccine for preclinical test, examination and analysis to seven manufacturers in India.The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), an autonomous organisation under the Department of Health Research, has informed that a number of companies are conducting clinical trials for COVID-19 vaccines in India. The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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Government of India has taken a series of actions to prevent, control and mitigate the impact of COVID-19. India followed a “whole of Government” and “whole of society” approach. Hon’ble Prime Minister, a High level Group of Ministers (GoM), Cabinet Secretary, Committee of Secretaries and senior officers in MoHFW continue to monitor public health response to COVID-19 in the country.Health is a State subject. The responsibility of engaging private hospitals in treating COVID cases is that of the State Government. Union Health Secretary has written to all States/UTs to engage private hospitals through mutually agreeable arrangements. Rates under PM-JAY and CGHS packages have been advised. A large number of States have accordingly issued instructions to that affect.The Minister of State (Health and Family Welfare), ShAshwini Kumar Choubey stated this in a written reply in the RajyaSabha today.

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The World Bank has so far provided three loans worth $2.5 billion to Government of India to support Government of India’s response to COVID-19 pandemic situation for health ($1 billion), for social protection ($0.75 billion) and for economic stimulus ($0.75 billion), the benefits of which have accrued to all States and UTs. This was stated by Shri Anurag Singh Thakur, Union Minister of State for Finance & Corporate Affairs in a written reply to a question in RajyaSabha today.

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In order to engage students meaningfully during their stay at home due to COVID-19 through educational activities at home with the help of their parents and teachers, the alternative academic calendars for students, parents and teachers for all the classes I-XII has been developed by the NCERT. Alternative Academic Calendar (AAC) for four weeks and next eight weeks for primary and upper primary stages had already been released. AAC for secondary and higher secondary stages for four week had also been released earlier by the Union Minister of Education. Now, AAC for next eight weeks for the secondary stage has been released by the Union Minister of Education Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ virtually today.

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Central Government was fully conscious that during the period of an inevitable lockdown, people should not be deprived of essential supplies. The situation was closely monitored 24*7 through Control Rooms at national level. With a view to provide food, health care and shelter to homeless people including migrant workers, Central Government on 28.03.2020, allowed the State Governments to use State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) for this purpose.Data on the number of persons who died on road while trying to reach their home State during COVID-19 lockdown is not centrally maintained. However, all necessary steps were taken by Central Government to facilitate the movement of migrant workers. This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri NityanandRai in a written reply to question in the LokSabha today.

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In terms of Section 6 (2) (i) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 (DM Act, 2005), National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), on being satisfied that the country is threatened by the spread of COVID – 19 pandemic, has been directing Union Home Secretary, being the Chairperson of the National Executive Committee (NEC), to take measures and to issue necessary guidelines so as to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Accordingly, NEC has been issuing guidelines about the Lockdown and Unlock phases in the country from time to time. By imposing country-wide Lockdown, India successfully blunted the aggressive spread of COVID-19. The period of Lockdown helped the nation create much required additional health infrastructure. States are free to take steps for restricting the disease in their respective States subject to compliance with the guidelines issued by the National Executive Committee as per recommendations of the NDMA. This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri NityanandRai in a written reply to question in the LokSabha today.

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