Omicron: Centre Asks States To Be Prepared

With the African variant of Coronavirus looming large, the Union government has asked all states to ramp up “intensive containment and active surveillance as well as better vaccination coverage amid worries over the new strain, ‘Omicron’.

“It is imperative that intensive containment, active surveillance, increased coverage of vaccination and Covid-appropriate behaviour be enforced in a very proactive measure to effectively manage this variant of concern,” the Health Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

“There is already a reporting mechanism for obtaining past travel details of passengers coming through international flights, and this should be reviewed at your level, the statement adds.

“Ample testing infrastructure need to be operationalised to tackle any surge due to this mutated virus. It has been observed that the overall testing as well as the proportion of RT-PCR tests have declined in some states. In the absence of sufficient testing, it is extremely difficult to determine the true level of infection spread,” the Health Ministry elaborates in the notification.

Other instructions include continuous monitoring of hotspots, saturation testing at hotspots and all positive samples should be passed on to labs for genome sequencing.

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