COVID-19 | Policies, Initiatives and advisors

Nation is indebted to doctors, nurses and other health workers: President 

The nation is indebted to doctors, nurses and other health workers who have been continuously on the forefront of our fight against this virus, President Ramnath Kovind said in his address to Nation on the eve of India’s 74th Independence day.  “ Unfortunately, many of them have lost their lives battling the pandemic. They are our national heroes. All Corona Warriors deserve high praise. They go much beyond their call of duty to save lives and ensure essential services. These doctors, health workers, members of Disaster Management Teams, police personnel, sanitation workers, delivery staff, transportation, railway and aviation personnel, providers of various services, government employees, social service organisations and generous citizens have been scripting inspiring stories of courage and selfless service.” He said that the celebrations of Independence Day this year will be rather restrained. The reason is obvious. The whole world confronts a deadly virus which has disrupted all activities and taken a huge toll. It has altered the world we lived in before the pandemic, the President emphasised. 

PM Modi to launch National Digital Health Mission and a unique identity number

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to launch the National Digital Health Mission and a unique identity number on the Independence Day with special focus on healthcare amid the Covid-19 outbreak. Modi is likely to unveil a national digital health ecosystem which would digitize personal medical records, connect diagnostic centres, medical institutions and state medical councils, provide a villager an easy appointment at the district hospital and verify all doctors. Treatment for the poor under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PM-JAY) would be standardised to ensure better care in private hospitals, according to sources.

On a continues rise, Recovery Rate stands at 71.17%

As a result of ramping up its testing facilities on a sustained basis, India has touched a new high of the highest number of tests in a single day, so far. A record high of 8, 48,728 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours. This has taken the cumulative tests to 2, 76, 94,416. WHO has advised that a country needs 140 tests per day per million populations. While the national average is 603 tests/day/million population, 34 States/UTs have exceeded this figure.The network, as on today, consists of1451 labs with 958 in the government sector and 493 private labs.  The total recovered COVID-19 patients have increased to more than 17.5 lakh (17, 51,555). The recoveries exceed the active cases (6, 61,595) by nearly 11 lakh (1,089,960).Effective clinical management through a Standard of Care treatment protocol has further ensured progressive and sustained decline in the mortality among COVID patients. The Case Fatality Rate is pegged at 1.95% today, maintaining its path of steady decline.

India marches ahead with “Atmanirbhar Bharat”

In view of the strengthened domestic production capacity and having met the domestic requirements for PPEs, the revised notification of the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) in July 2020 permitted export of PPEs. As a result of this relaxation, in the month of July itself, India exported 23 lakh PPEs to five countries. These include the USA, UK, UAE, Senegal and Slovania. This has substantially aided India to position itself in the global export market of PPEs.The “Make in India spirit embedded in the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan has resulted in providing resilience and self-sufficiency to the country for various medical equipment including PPEs. While the Union Government is supplying PPEs, N95 masks, ventilators etc., to the State/UT Governments, States are also procuring these items directly. Between March to August 2020, they have procured 1.40 crore indigenous PPEs from their own budgetary resources. During the same period, the Centre has distributed 1.28 cr PPEs to States / UTs / Central Institutions, free of cost.

Centre Advisories / Policies / Updates

Dr. Harsh Vardhan inaugurates Voluntary Blood Donation Campaign at AIIMS, Delhi

Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare inaugurated a Voluntary Blood Donation Campaign at AIIMS, New Delhi,today. The Minister encouraged the doctors and healthcare workers themselves to come up in large numbers on the eve of Independence Day to donate blood and save lives of patients. Appreciating the initiative taken up by AIIMS, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said, “On the eve of our 73rd Independence Day, this voluntary blood donation camp is a tribute to both fallen COVID white coat warriors and the Kargil martyrs. We must remember the ultimate sacrifice made by the COVID warriors including doctors, nurses or paramedical staff while saving people’s lives in the pandemic.” To mark the event, the family members of COVID warrior Late Sh. Hiralal, who was a frontline health worker at AIIMS and family members of KargilShaheed Lance NaikRajbirSingh were honoured for their sacrifice.

2, 76, 94,416 samples tested for Covid-19 so far: ICMR

Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) today said as many as 2, 76, 94,416 samples were tested for Covid till Thursday. It also said that as many as 8, 48,278 samples were tested on Thursday (13 August) alone. Out of total Covid-19 tests being conducted every day across the country, about 25-30% tests comprise of rapid antigen tests, informed the Union Health Ministry recently. “When we started, antigen tests comprised only 5-6 per cent of the total tests being conducted in a single, but this proportion is consistently raising. Today, total antigen tests are nearly between 25-30 per cent tests of the total number of covid19 tests done so far,” said ICMR Director-General Dr. Balram Bhargava while addressing media. Bhargava said that rapid antigen detection test has a very high specificity, i.e., its ability to detect true negative from 99.3 to 100 per cent. However, it has moderate sensitivity between 55 to 85 per cent.

Prepared by Impact Health Research Team

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