Hyderabad: Hospital staff outside the special isolation ward set up for coronavirus in Hyderabad. (Photo: PTI)
The Andhra Pradesh government has referred 32,349 people suffering from various health conditions for medical examination, including testing for COVID-19.
These people were identified during the third survey of about 1.43 crore families in the state by health workers, Asha workers, Auxiliary Nurses and Midwives and village and ward volunteers.
Doctors who examined these 32,349 people suggested that 9,107 of them should be sent for tests. However, during a review meeting headed by Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy on Sunday, it was decided to test all of them.
Many of these people are suffering from cold or cough or fever and have diabetes or hypertension or both. Many of them are senior citizens. “As a precautionary measure, we have decided to test all the 32,349 people who have some health condition or the other. Doctors who examined them identified only 9,107 for testing but we decided to test all of them as we don’t want to leave anything to chance,” Health Minister A K Krishna Srinivas said.
With 12 new COVID-19 cases reported on Sunday, the total number of positive cases in Andhra Pradesh has climbed to 417.
As part of the efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19, the state government has conducted two surveys of the 1.47 crore families in the state and the third survey has covered about 1.43 crore families so far. The health workers and volunteers are visiting each household and inquiring about the health of the family members, and if they suspect anyone to be unwell, he or she is referred to medical staff for examination.
During the review meeting on Sunday, Jagan also instructed officials to distribute 3 masks each to the approximately 5.3 crore people in the state. “The Andhra Pradesh government will distribute 16 crore masks to state people and expedite the third survey,” an official said.
To assess the scale of the COVID-19 spread, the health department is going to conduct 45,000 tests across the state. “The focus will be on the zones where COVID-19 is prevalent. High-risk patients such as senior citizens and those suffering from hypertension, diabetes will be tested on priority. Information regarding the clusters and zones will be updated regularly based on the level of virus infection so that the infection can be contained,” the official said.
The government Sunday made it compulsory for supermarkets and shops to have social distancing markings.
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