Jammu: Amid mounting concerns with regard to increasing in a number of confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the country, Advisor to the Lieutenant Governor, Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar and Chief Secretary, BVR Subrahmanyam took stock of readiness and measures in place to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in Jammu and Kashmir, at a meeting here.
Divisional Commissioner Jammu, Deputy Commissioner, Jammu Director, National Health Mission, Principal GMC, Jammu, Director, Health Services, Jammu and other senior officers from the Health Department attended the meeting. Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, all Deputy Commissioners, Director, SKIMS and Principal, GMC, Srinagar attended the meeting through video conference.
While reviewing the preparedness, Chief Secretary informed about the additional measures taken to prevent the spread of the virus in Jammu and Kashmir. A new administrative reporting structure has been created in the Union Territory to monitor the Coronavirus situation headed by Bhupinder Kumar, Director, National Health Mission. Further, at the Divisional Level, respective Divisional Commissioners shall be assisted by respective Director of Health Services while as at the District Level, Deputy Commissioner shall be in-charge to be assisted by respective Chief Medical Officers.
The said structure for Coronavirus control efforts shall also ensure the creation of adequate quarantine, isolation and other requisite facilities besides undertaking adequate measures for surveillance of home quarantine persons.
Chief Secretary further revealed that other additional measures include 100% passenger self-declaration at both Srinagar and Jammu Airports. All incoming passengers shall be checked for symptoms and if found positive will be diverted to the help desk as per the mandated protocol to address the infection. Besides, two police check posts at the entry points have been set up at Kathua in Jammu Division and Zig, Qazigund in Kashmir Division for general checking of people having a history of travel, if any, to severely affected countries or have had any contact with a person from such countries. In case of any positive history, the passenger shall be diverted to the nearby health care facilities for further checks and tests under the mandatory protocol.
Advisor to the Lieutenant Governor, while taking stock of the arrangements, was apprised about the quarantine and isolation facilities and availability of medicines and protective equipment. He asked the Divisional Commissioners to hold meetings with the private hospitals/health care providers and Hospital Association to ensure that any person with a history of travel is referred to government healthcare centre having required facilities.
Chief Secretary stressed the Divisional Commissioners and all Deputy Commissioners to ensure that the arrangement in place remains completely leak proof. The Divisional Commissioners were also asked to ensure that the Airlines make in-flight announcements on all domestic flights with regard to declaration forms and checks in place at the two airports as well as to ensure announcements at the Railway Station for general public awareness. Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, was asked to also ensure 100% self-declaration at Yatra counter, Katra, for pilgrims visiting the shrine of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi.
Divisional Commissioners and all Deputy Commissioners were asked to have any avoidable large gatherings deferred in their respective jurisdictions as a precautionary measure against the spread of the infection. They were asked to carry out a capacity assessment of total quarantine and isolation facility so as to deal with any eventuality. They were also asked to ensure adequate stock/supplies of medicines and preventive material for medical attendance including doctors and nurses and affected patients and their contacts.
Director, National Health Mission was asked to carry out extensive Information, Education & Communication (IEC) campaign through small pamphlets of Do’s & Don’ts for general public awareness to control the spread and to ensure the distribution among the general public for information regarding hygiene ethics.