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Ghaziabad: CM directs officials to focus on surveillance, initiate ‘virtual ICUs for Covid-19 patients

PUBLISHED ON SEP 28, 2020 12:08 AM IST

Ghaziabad: Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath, during a video conference with Ghaziabad officials on Sunday, underlined the need for intensifying surveillance, and contact tracing in order to keep the positivity rate for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) below 5% and death rate below 1% in the state. The CM also stressed on the concept of creating ‘virtual ICUs’ in order to provide better treatment and consultation to Covid-19 patients.

The conference was held Sunday evening wherein the CM said that care should be taken to ensure that patients get help in the initial stages of the disease itself.

“The CM directed that efforts should be made to ensure that patients do not reach the severe symptom stage, which needs hospitalisation at L3 hospitals, and are treated at L1 or L2 level hospitals instead. He said that if the patient reaches L3 category treatment, then there is a problem with the surveillance system, which needs to be strengthened. He has directed that the positivity rate should be below 5% and the death rate should be below 1%. The district is already below the desired levels,” said Dr NK Gupta, chief medical officer, Ghaziabad.

The L1, L2 and L3 category hospitals are part of the state government’s three-tier Covid healthcare facility. The L1 hospitals are for treating asymptomatic patients while L2 hospitals deal with patients having moderate complications. The L3 hospitals deal with patients who have severe symptoms.

The meeting was held with officials from 16 districts of the state, which have been seeing an average of 100 or more coronavirus cases a day. These include Ghaziabad and Gautam Budh Nagar.

“The CM has also directed to initiate the concept of virtual ICUs and remotely connecting specialists from the Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences and King George’s Medical University at Lucknow to patients. At present, we have 164 ICU beds for Covid-19 patients in the district. We will soon start the virtual ICU facility, through which online consultation with specialists is available to Covid-19 patients lodged in ICUs in Ghaziabad,” Dr Gupta added.

The CM has also directed district officials to come up with ‘micro containment zones’ which will be more compact, with a reduced parameter, in order to cover a smaller number of houses. Officials said that more modalities about the micro containment zones are expected to be received in a day or two.

“Besides, the chief minister has directed that one-third of total testing should be done through the use of RT-PCR method, while the rest should be with the help of rapid antigen kits. In this context, the government-appointed nodal officer took a review meeting on Sunday evening and directed us to increase the testing to 6,000 per day, and also to increase testing at the new RT-PCR lab at MMG Hospital to 750 samples per day,” Dr Gupta added.

He said that in order to scale up testing, he has provided five lab technicians for the new lab. The district is presently testing 3,500-4,000 samples per day.

“We have directed the concerned authorities to take up strict enforcement of containment zones in the district. District officials will monitor containment zones regularly,” said IAS, Senthil Pandian C, the nodal officer for Ghaziabad for reviewing Covid-19 preparedness.

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