No community spread yet in state, says Dr Rajo

STAFF REPORTER
IMPHAL, 4th Jul: Allaying fear of community transmission among the public following the case of Jiribam, health director Dr K Rajo said that the 28 fresh cases detected in Jiribam district which include 26 police personnel, one teacher and one lab technician, is a case of local transmission.
Addressing a press conference at the medical directorate office here on Saturday, Dr Rajo said that the state has not stepped into the stage of community transmission yet and appealed to the public not to get panic. Since several natives of the state are returning from red zones, it is obvious that positive cases of Covid-19 will rise. However, there is not much reason to fear since both mild and severe cases can be cured after treatment. Fortunately, there is no fatality in the state, he said while urging the public to strictly follow the SOPs in order to prevent entering into the community transmission stage.
On the other hand, he said, Covid patients are housed at RIMS Oncology department. However, RIMS did not raise any concern regarding the impact on cancer patients requiring radiation therapy. Since the department has knowledge of the situation, proposal of shifting the patients from there will be discussed during the next meeting, he said.
Regarding the ‘paid quarantine’ notice for doctors and other healthcare workers, he said that there are separate quarantine centres for the healthcare workers. The notification was issued so that any doctor, who wants to avail paid quarantine facility can opt for one over the institutional facility set up by the government, he said while clarifying the doubts over the notice. At the same time, the government is putting efforts to enhance the strength of the psychological support team in order to provide maximum service to everybody who needs the service.
Additional director (health) Dr Khoisnam Sasheekumar Mangang said that the 28 fresh cases in Jiribam are from among 180 close contacts of a police ASI, whose result was confirmed to be positive on July 1. Since the contact history of the new cases are known, the cases will be classified as local transmission but not community transmission. The authority is taking up further efforts to trace contacts of the fresh cases.
He further said that community transmission is the stage in which there is no known source of the infection or travel history to an affected area for a case. Since community transmission is a sensitive issue, public must restraint maximum caution while using the term, he added.
Covid testing in-charge Dr Meena said that the state has now nine TrueNat machines with which test results can be achieved in a relatively shorter period. Efforts are on to provide testing facility to the general public. Such facilities will also be set up in private labs. Such testing facility for the general public will be carried out on payment of fees but the government is discussing to make it free of charge for some categories like BPL families and frontline workers, she added.


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