Covid News Updates: Centre asks states to hold mock drills at health facilities in view of global rise in…

Business NewsNewsNewsblogsCovid News Updates: Centre asks states to hold mock drills at health facilities in view of global rise in Covid cases

Economic Times | 25 Dec, 2022 | 06:28AM IST

Covid News Updates: To ensure the readiness of the COVID-19 health facilities to meet the increase in clinical care needs due to any spurt in cases, the Union health ministry has asked the states and Union territories to hold mock drills at all health facilities on Tuesday.

In view of a surge in the Covid trajectory in many countries, it is necessary that the requisite public health measures are put in place in all the states to meet any exigencies, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said in a letter to the states on Saturday.

The preparedness of the Covid health facilities is crucial to ensure that all the districts are in a state of readiness to meet the increase in clinical care needs due to any spurt in cases, Bhushan said.

“It has therefore been decided to hold mock drill at all health facilities (including identified COVID dedicated health facilities) across the country on Tuesday, 27th December,” he said in the letter.

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COVID-19: China claims medical supplies ‘adequate’ amid reports of shortage

Amid a rise in COVID-19 cases, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said that they have “expanded production capacity” of medical supplies amid reports of a shortage of fever and cold drugs medicines. Local authorities have been restricting sales of fever medications, down to the pill, NTD reported. The sudden shift in China’s COVID-19 policy has left pharmaceutical companies ill-prepared to tackle the surge in COVID-19 cases. It has resulted in a shortage of medicines needed for fever and cold, according to NTD.

No COVID-19 case or death reported in Chhattisgarh

No COVID-19 case or death was reported from Chhattisgarh on Saturday, the twentieth time the state had a clean slate amid the pandemic this year, an official said. There was no addition to the tally and toll similarly on April 10, 14, 16, 17, May 15, November 13, 23, December 3, 4, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15 , 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20, he pointed out.

Nepal health ministry issues alert on new Covid variant BF.7

Nepal’s Ministry of Health and Population on Saturday cautioned the public about the emergence of a new COVID-19 variant BF.7 and advised people to mask up in public places. In a press statement, the Nepal Health Ministry said that the new variant of Covid-19 has not been confirmed in Nepal so far. However, due to its growing influence in neighbouring countries, there is a need to be alert in the Himalayan nation as well.

COVID-19: Arunachal gears up operational readiness

With sudden spurt of COVID-19 cases in several countries, the Arunachal Pradesh government has decided to gear up operational readiness in the state and maintain strict vigil by enhancing surveillance activities including, early detection, isolation, testing and timely management of suspected and confirmed cases. Chief Secretary Dharmendra in a notification has directed all districts to prioritize detection and containment of outbreaks of new SARs-CoV-2 variant and micro containment measures as and where needed.

India recognised as pharmacy of the world: FM

India is recognised as the pharmacy of the world as the country produces global standard medicine at affordable cost, Union Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Saturday. India supplies about 50 per cent of all of Africa’s demand for generic medicine, 40 per cent of USA’s need for generic medicine and 25 per cent of the UK’s requirement of all medicines, she said at the 35th annual convocation of The Tamil Nadu Dr MGR Medical University.

Centre asks states to hold mock drills at health facilities in view of global rise in Covid cases

To ensure the readiness of the COVID-19 health facilities to meet the increase in clinical care needs due to any spurt in cases, the Union health ministry has asked the states and Union territories to hold mock drills at all health facilities on Tuesday. In view of a surge in the Covid trajectory in many countries, it is necessary that the requisite public health measures are put in place in all the states to meet any exigencies, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said in a letter to the states on Saturday.

Tamil Nadu: Random screening of passengers coming from abroad

From today we’ve started random screening of passengers coming from abroad. Those who will test positive will be asked to self-monitor or self-quarantine themselves. People should wear masks & follow Covid protocols: Arjun Kumar, Deputy Director, Madurai Health Dept

Mumbai logs 10 new COVID-19 cases

Mumbai on Saturday recorded 10 new cases of coronavirus that raised the tally of infections 11,55,084, an official from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation said. The toll remained unchanged at 19,746, while the count of recoveries reached 11,35,294 after three patients recovered from the infection in the last 24 hours, the official said.

Health Ministry directs States, UTs to ensure regular supply of medical oxygen for Covid-19 management

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) on Saturday wrote to all the States and Union Territories of the country and directed them to ensure a functional and regular supply of medical oxygen for Covid-19 pandemic management. In its letter, the Ministry emphasised the importance of medical oxygen and vital resource in all clinical settings, particularly during the pandemic. A reliable oxygen supply is critical for saving lives during patient care and COVID-19 management, it said.

Maharashtra records 38 new COVID-19 case, zero fatality

At least 38 new cases of coronavirus were detected in Maharashtra on Saturday, raising the tally of infections in the state to 81,36,479, an official from the state health department said. The toll remained unchanged at 1,48,414, while the count of recoveries reached 79,87,928 after 35 patients recovered from the infection in the last 24 hours, the official said.

Millions getting infected by COVID in China

As hospitals and morgues in China are overwhelmed by millions of Covid cases, official data projected that millions have been infected since December 1 while the government has permitted the opening up of “Internet Hospitals” for the affected people to seek medical help to reduce the overload on clinics. There were nearly 37 million new infections nationwide as of Tuesday this week, officials cited data, highlighting for the first time the surge in cases across the country.

COVID roils Chinese towns

  • As China grapples with its first-ever national COVID-19 wave, emergency wards in small cities and towns southwest of Beijing are overwhelmed. Intensive care units are turning away ambulances, relatives of sick people are searching for open beds, and patients are slumped on benches in hospital corridors and lying on floors for a lack of beds.
  • Over two days, AP journalists visited five hospitals and two crematoriums in towns and small cities in Baoding and Langfang prefectures, in central Hebei province. The area was the epicenter of one of China’s first outbreaks after the state loosened COVID-19 controls in November and December. For weeks, the region went quiet, as people fell ill and stayed home.

Health Secretary writes to secretaries (Health) of States and UTs regarding conducting mock drills at all health facilities

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan writes to secretaries (Health) of States and UTs regarding conducting mock dr… https://t.co/aAmLMpmnLd

— ANI (@ANI) 1671888639000

Mutation is COVID’s only tool for outbreak: Expert

Amid the concerns over rising cases of COVID in several countries especially neighbouring China, a top scientist from Tata Institute for Genetics and Society, Bengaluru on Friday said that the COVID subvariant is less likely to trouble India due to hybrid immunity among the populace while adding that people must be careful since the only tool the virus has for an outbreak is mutation.

Tesla suspends production at Shanghai plant – internal notice

Tesla suspended production at its Shanghai plant on Saturday, according to an internal notice and two people with knowledge of the matter, bringing ahead a previous plan to pause most work at the plant in the last week of December. The U.S. automaker cancelled the morning shift and told all workers at its most productive manufacturing hub they could start their break, said the people and the notice seen by Reuters. The company did not give a reason.

Covid-19 vaccination drive gets on fast track in Surat

In view of the recent upsurge in cases of Covid 19 in some countries, the vaccination drive in Surat has got a fast track, said Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) on Saturday. Rajesh Umrigar, Medical Officer of Surat Municipal Corporation said that a lot of awareness is being created among the people regarding the havoc of the new variant BF7 of Covid. “Today long queues were seen since morning for the booster dose of the vaccine at the Health Center operated by Surat Municipal Corporation. People are voluntarily coming forward to complete their vaccination course,” said Rajesh Umrigar.

COVID concerns: Wear masks, Tuljapur temple authorities urge staff, devotees

The Osmanabad district administration has appealed to devotees and staff at the renowned Tuljapur Temple to wear masks on the premises amid a scare from the BF.7 sub variant of Omicron and chances of a spike in COVID-19 cases, an official said on Saturday. The appeal has been issued by the Tuljapur tehsildar, who is also the administrator of temple, he said.

BJP is taking excuse of Covid: Kharge

Delhi | BJP is in fear due to Bharat Jodo Yatra and is taking excuse of Covid. There is no Covid anywhere. Nothing happened to anyone. PM Modi himself doesn’t wear a mask. All this is being done to create fear among people & break this Yatra: Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge

Tamil Nadu steps up vigil, screens 37 international passengers for COVID-19

The Tamil Nadu government stepped up vigil amidst a sudden surge in Coronavirus cases in some parts of the world and on Saturday 37 passengers who arrived at the international airport here were screened for COVID-19. None among those screened had symptoms for Coronavirus, said State Health Minister Ma Subramanian.

MP: Passengers arriving at Khajuraho airport to be screened for coronavirus

Passengers arriving at Khajuraho Airport in Madhya Pradesh will be screened for coronavirus if they show symptoms of the infection, an official said on Saturday. Khajuraho in Chhatarpur district is one of the biggest tourist attractions in central India. As per directives of the authorities, a team will be posted at Khajuraho Airport for screening passengers and RT-PCR tests will be conducted in suspected cases, Chhatarpur’s chief medical and health officer (CMHO) Dr Lakhan Tiwari said.

Hong Kong leader aims to reopen border with China next month

Virus Outbreak-Hong Kong – Hong Kong’s leader says China has agreed to a reopening of the city’s border with the mainland, which has been largely closed by pandemic Hong Kong’s leader said Saturday that China has agreed to a reopening of the city’s border with the mainland, which has been largely closed by pandemic restrictions, and that he is aiming for a mid-January start. Chief Executive John Lee, returning from a trip to Beijing where he met President Xi Jinping and other officials, told reporters at the Hong Kong airport that the two sides would develop a plan to reopen the border in a gradual and orderly manner.

COVID-19: Aundha Nagnath temple authorities urge people to wear masks

The authorities at Aundha Nagnath temple in Maharashtra’s Hingoli, considered one of the 12 ‘jyotirlingas’ in the country, have requested people to use face masks amid a scare of a spike in COVID-19 cases, an official said on Saturday. Everyone coming to the temple must adhere to COVID-appropriate behaviour, including maintaining social distancing, temple manager Surendra Dafle told PTI.

COVID19 is now out of Maharashtra. There are only 132 Covid patients in the state. There is nothing to fear

– Maharashtra Health Minister Tanaji Sawant

Covid News: Random sampling of international arrivals for Covid19 and thermal scanning being done at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Hyderabad

Covid News: Virus RNA found in sewage samples in Delhi & Mumbai

Covid News: We’re working on alert mode to control the spread of Covid19; conducting environmental, sewage & human surveillance. Virus RNA found in sewage samples in Delhi & Mumbai. Urge people to wear masks, avoid crowded places & follow Covid appropriate behaviour, said Union Health Min Dr Mandaviya.

Covid News: Nearly 250 million Covid-19 infections in China, states leaked document

Tamil Nadu Health Minister Ma. Subramanian inspects COVID-19 testing booth established outside the Chennai International airport

International arrivals from China, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Japan and South Korea being tested for Covid19 at the Delhi International airport from today

Those who are not vaccinated should get vaccinated immediately. We should avoid crowding and wear a face mask. If we do these things, we will be safe. The government needs to continue to conduct testing

– Dr Rakesh Mishra, Director, TIGS on Covid19 situation in the country

There is nothing for India to be worried about at this stage. China is in a situation where many of its people will get infected & do not have vaccine protection

– Dr Rakesh Mishra, Director, Tata Institute for Genetics and Society on Covid19 situation in the country

Covid News: Packed ICUs, crowded crematoriums: COVID roils Chinese towns

Covid19 testing underway in Kingkoti District Hospital, Hyderabad

“We are prepared to handle the situation in case of the drastic spread of the virus. People should avoid going to crowded places and wear face masks” Dr Rajendranath, MS.

This yatra of Congress is to join corrupt people…They should first think about the good of the country rather than thinking about the good of the family

– Union minister Anurag Thakur

Covid cases rising in China, Korea & Japan but Cong is bothered about only one family. It’s time to follow Covid protocol. I want to ask Rahul Gandhi, did he or other Cong leaders who came in contact with HP CM who tested positive, isolate or get tested

– Union minister Anurag Thakur

Covid News: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare writes to all States/UTs to ensure a functional and regular supply of medical oxygen for Covid19 pandemic management

Covid News: Air Suvidha form filling to declare current health status to be made compulsory for international passengers arriving from China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand

Covid News: RT-PCR mandatory for arrivals from China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand

Covid News: RT-PCR test to be mandatory for international arrivals from China, Japan, S. Korea, Hong Kong & Thailand. On arrival, if any passenger from these countries is found symptomatic or tests positive for Covid19, then he/she will be put under quarantine, said Union Health Min Dr Mandaviya.

Covid News: Random testing of international arriving passengers begins at Delhi airport

Covid News: The random coronavirus testing of international arriving passengers started at Delhi airport on Saturday as the authorities step up measures to prevent possible spread of the infection in the country. Two per cent of passengers arriving in each international flight will be subject to random coronavirus testing at airports from Saturday. Such travellers in each flight shall be identified by the airlines concerned and after submitting the sample, passengers will be allowed to leave the airport. Thermal screening will be done for all passengers at the point of entry and those found to be symptomatic during screening will be immediately isolated. The testing of the international arriving passengers started in the morning, according to an airport official.

Rising Covid cases: Exporters keeping fingers crossed

Covid News: Indian exporters are keeping their fingers crossed on account of rising Covid infections in China and other countries as it could again disrupt supply chains and affect demand for goods. Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) Director General Ajay Sahai said that if the cases continue to increase in the coming days, it may have implications on imports.”We are keeping our fingers crossed,” he said.

Covid News: China’s propaganda machine sputters in zero-Covid reversal

Covid News: China’s state media is struggling and censors are working overtime as Beijing gropes for a coherent narrative in the wake of the sudden reversal of its hallmark zero-Covid policy. For years, the country’s propaganda apparatus hailed zero-Covid as proof of the superiority of the Communist Party’s authoritarian rule and the wisdom of powerful President Xi Jinping. But now its usual mouthpieces have been left to spin the decision to scrap strict travel curbs, quarantines and snap lockdowns as a victory even as cases soar.

Covid News: Hospitals in Surat gear up for Covid

Covid News: New Civil Hospital (NCH) has started preparation to keep 300 beds with 200 ventilators ready at the Covid-19 hospital on its campus. The hospital can be expanded up to 1,000 beds in the stem cell hospital building.A mock drill was carried out at NCH to test the oxygen tank and oxygen plant as per the government directives. Around 400 ventilators have been kept ready for use in case of emergency at the hospital.“We have started a process to increase the staff at the pathology laboratory in case of a rise in the number of RTPCR and genome sequencing tests. Currently, there is no case,” said a senior doctor at NCH.

Covid News: India records 201 new COVID-19 infections; active cases rise to 3,397

Covid News: India reported 201 new coronavirus infections, raising the tally to 4.46 crore, while the active cases increased to 3,397, the Union Health Ministry said on Saturday. The death toll stands at 5,30,691 with one fatality reconciled by Kerala, the data updated at 8 am by the ministry stated. The daily positivity was recorded at 0.15 per cent and the weekly positivity at 0.14 per cent. A total of 90.97 crore tests for detection of COVID-19 have been conducted so far, with 1,36,315 tests being conducted in the last 24 hours, the ministry said.

Thane records one new COVID-19 case; active tally seven

Thane district of Maharashtra recorded one new coronavirus positive case, which took its overall tally to 7,47,388, a health official said on Saturday. With the addition of this case on Friday, there are now seven active cases in the district, he said, adding that the death toll remained unchanged at 11,967. The recovery figure stood at 7,36,179, the official said

China shifts how it counts Covid deaths as crematoriums fill up

Facing growing scepticism that it is downplaying Covid deaths, the Chinese government defended the accuracy of its official tally by revealing it had updated its method of counting fatalities caused by the virus, reported CNN.

According to the latest guidelines from the National Health Commission, only those whose death is caused by pneumonia and respiratory failure after contracting the virus are classified as Covid deaths, said Wang Guiqiang, a top infectious disease doctor.

He said those deemed to have died due to another disease or underlying condition, such as in the event of a heart attack, will not be counted as a virus death, even if they were sick with Covid at the time, reported CNN.

Telangana Health Minister urges Centre to supply vaccines to administer booster doses

Telangana Health Minister T Harish Rao on Friday urged the Centre to supply COVID-19 vaccines to step up booster dose coverage in the state.

Rao, who attended a video conference held by Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, said Telangana has achieved 48 per cent booster dose coverage against national average of 23 per cent, an official release said.

He asked the Centre to inform the states on various issues, including spread of virus, its impact and treatment in view of the rise in Omicron sub-variant BF 7 cases in different countries. This will help the states in improving their preparedness, he said.

Chhattisgarh sees three COVID-19 cases, active tally now seven

Chhattisgarh on Friday reported three COVID-19 cases at a positivity rate of 0.23 per cent, taking the tally to 11,77,748, a health official said.

The death toll and recovery count stood unchanged at 14,146 and 11,63,595, respectively, he added.

The active caseload in the state was seven, the official said, adding the new cases comprised two in Raipur and one in Durg.

New law ends COVID-19 vaccine mandate for US troops

US military forces around the world will no longer be required to get the COVID-19 vaccine, after the mandate was lifted under an USD 858 billion defence spending bill passed by Congress and signed into law on Friday by President Joe Biden.

The Pentagon is now likely to strongly encourage troops to get the shot, but has 30 days to work out the details for rescinding the vaccine mandate.

Biden had opposed the Republican-backed provision, agreeing with Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin that lifting the mandate was not in the best interests of the military, according to White House officials. But he ultimately accepted GOP demands in order to win passage of the legislation.

No need to panic, situation under control, says J-K adminstration

Asserting that there is no need to panic in view of rising COVID-19 cases in neighbouring countries as no surge has been reported in the Jammu and Kashmir, Lieutenant Governor administration on Friday maintained that it is fully geared up to tackle the situation.

The officials said that genome sequencing facilities are being created in both capital cities of Jammu and Srinagar and asked people to go for voluntary testing if symptoms occur.

In a meeting with health experts, Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta called for preemptive measures so that the administration is fully prepared to meet any contingency.

Odisha COVID-19 situation ‘stable’

With rising number of coronavirus cases in some countries, including China, the Odisha government on Friday issued a fresh advisory to citizens to follow COVID-19 appropriate behaviour, like wearing masks during Christmas and New Year.

The advisory was issued after a high-level meeting was held on the prevailing COVID-19 situation.

The state administration asked people to avoid crowded places and use masks, maintain social distancing, and go for tests if found symptoms.

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