New Delhi, Apr 14the : Union Health Ministry on Tuesday said that India registered 1211 new COVID-19 cases and 31 deaths in last 24 hours, taking the total positive cases to 10363 and 339 deaths. Joint Secretary of the Health Ministry Lav Agarwal, however, said that 179 people have been cured in last 24 hours and total number, who have discharged from hospitals reached to 1,036.
“Our effort has been to act in pre-emptive manner. We started screening 12-13 days before COVID-19 has been declared as a public health emergency. Our advance action has been a major contributory factor in how we have been able to manage coronovirus outbreak,” said Agarwal along with representatives of other departments. He also said that the Ministry has brought out guidelines to control COVID-19 in high density areas and added that the emphasis of this manual is to bring frugal sanitary and hygiene solutions and measures with focus on community-shared toilet, washing or bathing facilities.
Agarwal also said that the government is continuously and rigorously working with states and Union Territories to strengthen the health infrastructure in the country. “As of now, a total of 602 dedicated COVID-19 hospitals with 1,06,719 isolation beds and 12,024 ICU beds have been developed,” he informed.
Referring to extending the lockdown, the official said the first effort was to break the chain of transmission. “That is why we follow up for 28 days. That is why we are promoting social distancing with lockdown. Each city and every district will undergo an evaluation till April 20; thereafter limited activity will be allowed in selected areas which have controlled the situation well,” Agarwal said while quoting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address to the nation over lockdown extension to contain the deadly virus outbreak. RR Gangakhedkar, official from ICMR said that total over 2.31 lakh tests have been conducted so far and 18,664 tests carried out yesterday in ICMR labs.
“We are doing COVID-19 testing as per our sampling criteria; non-criteria based testing can result in sub-optimal use of testing kits. Besides, we are progressively widening our sampling zone, we are testing those who have SARI or influenza like illness,” Agarwal added. (UNI)