Covid-19: Bengal to step up surveillance in hi-risk spots


By NS Desk 14-Apr-2020

Kolkata, April 14 (IANS) With the total number of coronavirus positive cases reaching 190, the West Bengal government has decided to step up vigilance and enhance fever surveillance through house-to-house visits in identified high-risk spots - geographical areas showing higher number of infected persons.

"While a significant number of these cases can be traced to a few pockets or settlements or even families, this calls for heightened vigilance and preventive steps to contain any potential for the spread of the virus," state Health Department sources said.

The Central government on Tuesday put the total number of Covid-19 cases in the state at 190, of whom seven have died and 36 recovered.

The Bengal government on Monday said the state still had 110 active cases. It is yet to update the figures for Tuesday.

Faced with a barrage of criticism from experts and political opponents that the number of tests in the state was too low, the Health Department has decided to for aggressive listing, tracing and tracking of all primary and secondary contacts in respect of every person who has tested positive for COVID in the high-risk spots.

Disinfection of the household or hospital ward or the area/locality concerned would also be undertaken.

The government would aceenhance fever surveillance through house-to-house visits through municipal health workers or ASHAs (Accredited Social Health Activists).

"In the urban areas, the teams constituted for dengue surveillance might be utilised for this purpose too, after providing them orientation material for surveillance.

"They have to look out for persons with symptoms of Influenza-like Illness including fever, sore throat, cough and runny nose or symptoms of Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) such as shortness of breath, respiratory difficulty," the sources said.



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