<br>The TPT, a 47-year-old folk cultural body, since March 21 last year, the World Puppet Day, has started a unique endeavour to make people aware about the danger of novel coronavirus and how to be protected from this disease.Many videos of the puppet dance on novel coronavirus, prepared by the artists of TPT group, and uploaded on the YouTube platform and other social media are attracting people's attention and admiration.The Covid awareness puppet videos in Bengali, Hindi and other local languages are also being telecast on various channels in Tripura and other northeastern states.One of the founders of TPT, Prabhitangsu Das said that since the beginning of the Covid pandemic last year they are continuously undertaking a variety of performances and shows and these are being shown on various platforms to make the people aware."The themes of our puppetry programmes are focused on social distancing, preventive measures, Covid appropriate behaviour, useful food and immunity boosting diet and various other measures and actions announced by the government," Das told IANS."Our puppetry programmes also highlighted how the coronavirus spread among the people, the necessity of registration of names in the Aarogya Setu and the benefit of Covid inoculation."Since we are unable to perform our regular puppet dance events due to the Covid-19 pandemic and related restrictions, we have chosen to go online through diverse social and electronic media to make people aware about the danger of the disease and protective measures," said Das, who is the programme director of the TPT.In Bengali, Hindi and other languages, TPT's 17 seconds to 90 seconds awareness videos with English subtitles show a story where a government official coughs and shows flu-like symptoms and is advised by his wife and daughter to consult a doctor.The doctor in his set of advisories explains to the worried family about the disease. The video, containing three puppet dolls, ends with a slogan, "Stay clean and hygienic" and highlights the messages of the World Health Organisation and other international bodies besides the advice of doctors.Das, son of TPT's founder Haripada Das, said that all the characters (puppets) of the video are made by their members and some of the performances are verbal and some others are non-verbal.The TPT members bear the entire expenses of these campaigns through puppetry."Puppetry is one of the powerful traditional folk cultural medium and it has numerous examples of efficacy in public health issues," said Das, who was awarded the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 2016 besides many other awards in recognition of his contribution to contemporary puppetry.He said: "My father late Haripada Das started the puppet dance culture in the mountainous northeastern state of Tripura in 1956 to propagate social awareness messages through puppetry."As an employee of the Social Welfare and Social Education Department of the Tripura government, my father through the puppet dance had started informing, educating, and entertaining people on diverse issues and making them aware about their social responsibilities and cultural heritage."The TPT has participated in various international and national puppet festivals and workshops in India and abroad including Germany.<br> <br>(Sujit Chakraborty can be contacted at email@example.com)--IANS<br>sc/bg/ksk/
New Delhi, June 20 (IANS) The Covid-19 cases in India continued to witness declining trend with the country recording 58,419 new cases, lowest in the last 81 days. In the same time span, 1,576 fatalities were reported, according to data released by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry on Sunday.This is the third consecutive day in last two months when the death toll is below the 2,000-mark. It is also the 13th consecutive day when India has reported less than one lakh new coronavirus cases.On June 15, India recorded 60,461 cases, lowest since March 29. On March 29, India recorded 56,211 cases of Covid.The overall tally of Covid-19 cases in the country now stands at 2,98,81,965.The active cases have now come down below 8 lakh. The country has 7,29,243 active cases presently and has witnessed 3,86,713 deaths so far.According to the Health Ministry, a total of 87,619 people have been discharged in the last 24 hours, taking the total discharge to 2,87,66,009 till date.The Health Ministry said that a total of 27,66,93,572 people have been vaccinated so far in the country, including 38,10,554 who were administered vaccines in the last 24 hours.According to the Indian Council of Medical Research, 39,10,19,083 samples have been tested up to June 19 for Covid-19. Of these 18,11,446 samples were tested on Saturday.--IANSaks/skp/
New Delhi, June 19 (IANS) India has recorded 60,753 new cases of Covid and 1,647 fatalities in the last 24 hours, according to data released by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry on Saturday.This is for the second consecutive day in last two months that the death tally has come down below the 2,000-mark. It is also the 12th consecutive day when India has reported less than one lakh new coronavirus cases.On June 15, India recorded 60,461 cases, lowest since March 29.The overall tally of Covid-19 cases in the country now stands at 2,98,23,546.The active cases have come down below 10 lakh. The country has 7,60,019 active cases presently and has witnessed 3,85,137 deaths so far.According to the Health Ministry, a total of 97,743 people have been discharged in the last 24 hours, taking the total discharge to 2,86,78,390 till date.The Health Ministry said that a total of 27,23,88,783 people have been vaccinated so far in the country, including 33,00,085 who were administered vaccines in the last 24 hours.According to the Indian Council of Medical Research, 38,92,07,637 samples have been tested up to June 18 for Covid-19. Of these 19,02,009 samples were tested on Friday.--IANSaks/in
New Delhi, June 18 (IANS) As the demand for natural anti-oxidants grows in India during the pandemic, a new antioxidant Gamma Oryzanol is especially gaining popularity due to several health benefits associated with it, health experts said on Friday.The antioxidants are substances that may protect your cells against free radicals, which play a role in heart disease, cancer and other diseases. Free radicals are molecules produced when your body breaks down food or when you're exposed to tobacco smoke or radiation.According to experts, since the pandemic started, people are focusing more on eating healthy and increasing immunity and the demand for natural antioxidants have been increased.Gamma Oryzanol, a mixture of antioxidant compounds in the bran's oil fraction, is also scientifically proven to play a role in reducing sugar and blood cholesterol levels, among other health-promoting benefits."Gamma Oryzanol helps in preventing heart attack by preventing platelet aggregation, so maintaining healthy cholesterol levels during Covid times is important," according to Praveen Chandra, Head of Department, Interventional Cardiology, Medanta-The Medicity, Gurugram.Now, Ricela Group which is the world's largest producer of refined rice bran oil, has brought Gamma Oryzanol to India in forms of capsules."Gamma Oryzanol is one-of-its-kind products in India. Presently, we are focusing on production and promotion of health-promoting value-added products from derivatives of rice through sustainable value creation," said Dr A.R. Sharma, Founder and Chairman of Ricela group.One capsule contains 150 mg of Gamma Oryzanol."It helps reduce high blood cholesterol and is effective for treating anxiety, managing sugar levels, helpful for patients of hypothyroidism and also plays an important role in preventing many lifestyle diseases," said Dt. Isha Vashisht, Vice President, AP Organics Limited.According to experts, people with obesity are more likely than normal-weight people to have other diseases that are independent risk factors for severe Covid-19, including heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes.They are also prone to metabolic syndrome, in which blood sugar levels, fat levels, or both are unhealthy and blood pressure may be high."Very recently, a study confirmed that Gamma Oryzanol is a potential therapeutic adjuvant to avoid or attenuate the cytokine storm in Covid-19 patients," said Neha Gupta, Infectious Diseases specialist, Medanta-The Medicity.Cytokine storm is an umbrella term encompassing several disorders of immune dysregulation and multiorgan dysfunction that can lead to multiorgan failure if inadequately treated.--IANSrt/na
In view of the second wave of Covid-19 that has put extreme pressure on diagnostic path labs, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) recently approved Covid-19 home testing using Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs). The self-use test can be used by symptomatic individuals and immediate contacts of confirmed cases as per the ICMR guidelines. Users of this test will not need sample collection by a healthcare professional. This will ease pressure on overburdened labs and reduce delays in testing. However, these tests should be done wisely and in lieu of the said Covid-19 norms.
According to the ICMR, individuals who test positive using the home testing kit may be considered as true positives, and no-repeat testing is required. All symptomatic individuals who test negative must get tested by RT-PCR, as RATs are likely to miss few positive cases.
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How Does The Home Testing Kit Work?
Each kit provides all testing materials, instructions to use (IFU) leaflet and a biohazard bag to be safely disposed of after testing. The test is designed to be done using a nasal swab (not the deep nasopharyngeal swab) to reduce the discomfort. The kit is supposed to provide results in 15 minutes and people who test positive should immediately isolate so that they do not infect others, and quickly contact the local municipal bodies and their healthcare provider. Those who test negative and continue to experience Covid-like symptoms should seek follow-up care from their healthcare provider and conduct an RT-PCR test.
How Do You Know When The Result Is Positive?
The kit has a control line and a test line that will indicate the result. If both Control Line C and the Test Line T appear in the cartridge, the presence of novel coronavirus antigen is confirmed, and the result is positive. This takes up to around 15 minutes for results to appear.
How Do You Know When The Result Is Negative?
If only quality Control Line C appears but the Test Line T does not appear, this indicates that novel coronavirus antigen has not been detected and the result is negative.
How Do You Know When The Result Is Invalid?
For invalid results, if the quality control line C is not observed, it will be invalid regardless of whether there is a test line T. In this case, the test shall be conducted again.
What Do Positive Results Indicate?
Positive results indicate the presence of viral antigens. People who test positive with the home Covid-19 Antigen Test should self-isolate and seek to follow up care with their physician or healthcare provider for further action.
What Are The Possible Disadvantages Of These Tests?
There could a possible discomfort while sample collection, if you do not do it correctly. Also, RATs have the tendency to interpret incorrect results. The other possibility is that people may test positive and resort to self-medication which could be harmful to them.
Are There Any Preparation To Do Before The Test?
Firstly, it is important that you find a clean place to do the test.
* Identify a table and sanitise the surface thoroughly.
* Wash your hands with soap, and make sure that your hands are dry before you perform the test.
* Tear the pouch and lay the contents of the kit on the table.
* Before you proceed with the test, please download the app mentioned in the testing kit, fill in the credentials and then proceed with the test. This is important so that no positive case is missed.
Always remember that there are many factors that come into play when it comes to home test kits. These tests work best with people who have symptoms of Covid-19. If you test a little early or say if you are asymptomatic, most likely your test may show negative and that might give you a false sense of reassurance that this negative test means you are not transmissible, when you really could be. So, if you are sick, it is important to seek medical aid from your healthcare provider, and report the findings of the test to the local municipal body.
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New Delhi, June 18 (IANS) India on Friday recorded 62,480 new cases of Covid and 1,587 fatalities in the last 24 hours, lowest in the last two months, according to data released by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry.This is for the first time in last two months that the death tally has come down below the mark of 2,000. And it is the 11th consecutive day when India has reported less than one lakh new Covid cases.On June 15, India recorded 60,461 cases, lowest since March 29.The overall tally of Covid-19 cases in the country now stands at 2,97,62,793. The active cases have come down below 10 lakh. The country has 7,98,656 active cases presently and has witnessed 3,83,490 deaths so far.According to the Health Ministry, a total of 88,877 people have been discharged in the last 24 hours, taking the total discharge to 2,85,80,647 till date.The Health Ministry said that a total of 26,89,60,399 people have been vaccinated so far in the country, including 32,59,003 who were administered vaccines in the last 24 hours.According to the Indian Council of Medical Research, 38,71,67,696 samples have been tested up to June 17 for Covid-19. Of these 19,29,476 samples were tested on Friday.--IANSaks/dpb