Suo-Moto assertion by Dr. Harsh Vardhan

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Parliament house in New Delhi
Parliament home in New Delhi


Suo-Moto assertion by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister for Well being & Household Welfare on 14th September 2020 in Lok Sabha/Rajya Sabha concerning the COVID pandemic and the steps taken by the Authorities of India

By PIB Delhi

The complete textual content of the suo-moto assertion by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister for Well being & Household Welfare at the moment in Lok Sabha/Rajya Sabha concerning COVID pandemic and the steps taken by the Authorities of India is as follows:

  1.   I’ve briefed this august home on two earlier events as soon as in February and once more in March this 12 months on the Covid Pandemic. I might once more wish to transient the Hon’ble members on the present scenario of Covid-19 Pandemic and the actions taken by the Authorities of India. 

2.    Since my final briefing, WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic and requested all international locations to take pressing and aggressive motion in opposition to this public well being disaster. 

3.   As on 11thSeptember, 2020, 215 international locations/territories worldwide are affected. As per WHO, there are greater than 2.79crore confirmed instances the world over with greater than 9.05 lakh deaths, with a case fatality fee of three.2%.

4.    As on 11thSeptember, 2020, a complete of 45,62,414 confirmed instances and 76,271 deaths (Case Fatality Price 1.67%) have been reported in India. As many as 35,42,663 (77.65%) instances have recovered. The utmost instances and deaths have been primarily reported from Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, West Bengal, Bihar, Telangana, Odisha, Assam , Kerala & Gujarat. All these States have reported multiple lakh instances. With our endeavor to handle COVID-19 by way of an entire of presidency & complete of society method, India has been capable of restrict its instances and deaths per million to three,328 instances per million and 55 deaths per million inhabitants respectively , which is without doubt one of the lowest on this planet as in comparison with equally affected international locations.

5.    Lots of the epidemiological parameters corresponding to mode of transmission, subclinical an infection, interval of virus shedding, function of immunity and so on. are nonetheless being researched. As soon as an individual is uncovered to the an infection, the illness might develop anytime between 1-14 days. The principle signs of Covid are  fever, cough, and problem in respiration. In our nation about 92% of the instances are reported to be having gentle illness. In solely about 5.8 % of instances the place oxygen remedy is required and the illness could also be extreme sufficient to require intensive care in only1.7% instances.

6.   The growing magnitude of this outbreak in India known as for a pre-emptive, pro-active, graded, whole-of-government, whole-of-society method, constructed round a complete technique to forestall infections, save lives and reduce impression.

7.    The Authorities of India undertook the COVID-19 problem with the very best degree of political dedication. The nationwide lockdown, a daring resolution, undertaken by Authorities duly involving neighborhood, initiated as self-imposed Junta Curfew as per the decision given by Hon’ble Prime Minister is testimony to the truth that India has collectively stood as much as handle COVId-19 and efficiently blunted the aggressive development of COVID. It has been estimated that this resolution prevented roughly 14–29 lakh instances and 37–78 thousand deaths. Additional, these 4 months had been utilized to create further well being infrastructure, improve human useful resource and produce inside India essential parts corresponding to PPEs, N-95 masks and ventilators. A working example is enhance in devoted isolation beds 36.3 occasions and devoted ICU beds above 24.6 occasions to what existed in March 2020. Whereas there was no indigenous manufacturing of PPE, with the requisite requirements, at that cut-off date, we at the moment are self-sufficient and, ready, to even export the identical. On behalf of our countrymen, I take this chance to congratulate our Hon’ble Prime Minister, Sh. Narendra Modi, who personally continues to observe the scenario and supplied his management.

8.   Authorities of India has initiated a collection of actions to forestall entry of the illness and to comprise it. I’m every day reviewing the scenario. Hon’ble Prime Minister himself has interacted with the Chief Ministers of all States and UT administrations and all stakeholders to commonly perceive points and collaborate with the States for efficient Covid administration. Group of Ministers below my Chairmanship consisting of Minister of Exterior Affairs, Minister of Civil Aviation and Minister of State for House Affairs, Minister of State for Delivery and Minister of State for Well being & Household Welfare have met 20 occasions since its inception on 3rdFebruary, 2020. Committee of Secretaries below Cupboard Secretary has taken common opinions with all associated Ministries of Well being, Defence, Ministry of Exterior Affairs, Civil Aviation, House, Textiles, Pharma, Commerce and different officers together with with State Chief Secretaries.

Underneath the general steering of  Hon’ble Prime Minister, Ministry of House Affairs, Govt. of India has constituted 11 Empowered Teams on 29th March 2020 on completely different facets of COVID-19 administration within the nation to take knowledgeable selections on points starting from (i) medical emergency planning, (ii) availability of hospitals, isolation and quarantine facility, illness surveillance and testing, (iii) making certain availability of important medical gear, (iv) augmenting human useful resource and capability constructing, (v) provide chain and logistic administration, (vi) coordination with personal sector, (vii) financial and welfare measures, (viii) info, communications and public consciousness, (ix) expertise and knowledge administration, (x) public grievance and (xi) strategic points associated to lockdown. These teams have lately been restructured on 10th September based mostly on the necessity and evolving state of affairs.

My very own Ministry is consistently reviewing the evolving state of affairs. Video conferences are being held with States commonly. We’ve held 63 video conferences up to now with State Well being Ministers, Well being functionaries and district degree officers. The Joint Monitoring Group (JMG) below the Chairmanship of DGHS which advises MoHFW on technical issues has met 40 occasions until now to evaluate the chance, evaluation the preparedness & response mechanisms and finalize technical tips.

9.   Authorities of India, based mostly on its expertise of efficiently managing pandemics and epidemics previously, supplied the requisite technique, plans and procedures to the State Governments and UT administrations. This contains containment plans and tips on a variety of topics associated to journey, behavioral& psycho-social well being, surveillance, laboratory help, hospital infrastructure, scientific administration, rational use of Private Protecting Gear (PPE) and so on. together with inspirational steering for healthcare personnel.

10.   Authorities of India has additionally taken a number of different measures to comprise/suppress the transmission of Covid. First Journey Advisory was issued on 17thJanuary, 2020 and as scenario advanced, the journey advisories had been revised in a graded method. Common screening of passengers from all international locations was launched and as much as 23rd March, 2020 (until suspension of all business flights), a complete of 14,154 flights with 15,24,266 passengers had been screened on the airports. Along with airports, about 16.31 lakh individuals had been screened at land border crossings and about 86,379persons had been screened at 12 main, 65 minor sea ports.

11.    Presently Authorities of India has suggested no scheduled worldwide business passenger plane be allowed to take off from any international airport for any airport in India, from March 22, 2020 besides below Vande Bharat Mission on Might 7th 2020, which goals to deliver house stranded Indians in lots of international locations attributable to Covid-19 pandemic. Momentary air journey preparations (Transport Bubbles) between India and 9 different mutually consenting international locations aimed toward restarting business passenger companies have commenced. They’re reciprocal in nature, that means airways from each international locations get pleasure from comparable advantages. A ‘Tips for Worldwide arrivals’ has additionally been issued by the Ministry on 24th Might, 2020, which had been revised on 2nd August, 2020.

Previous to the lockdown 1.0, Authorities of India evacuated Indian nationals from Wuhan inChina, Diamond Princess Cruise Ship, Japan, Iran, Italy and Malaysia. Underneath Vande Bharat Mission, as reported on 11th September, 2020, a complete of 12,69,172 passengers have been introduced again to India.

12.    Group surveillance was initiated initially for journey associated instances and subsequently for instances being reported from neighborhood by Built-in Illness Surveillance Programme (IDSP).As on 11thSeptember 2020, a complete of about 40 lakh individuals have been stored below surveillance and in depth contact tracing of all constructive instances is commonly being undertaken by way of illness surveillance community in order to interrupt the chain of transmission.

Ministry of Well being & Household Welfare launched containment plans to comprise cluster and enormous outbreaks on 2nd March and 4thApril, 2020 respectively and these plans had been up to date sometimes. The containment plans envisage a technique of breaking the chain of transmission by (i) defining containment and buffer zones, (ii) making use of strict perimeter management, (iii) intensive lively home to accommodate seek for instances and contacts, (iv) isolation and testing of suspect instances and excessive threat contacts, (v) quarantine of excessive threat contacts, (vi) intensive threat communication to boost neighborhood consciousness on easy preventive measures and want for immediate remedy searching for and (vii) strengthening of passive Influenza Like Sickness (ILI)/ Extreme Acute Respiratory Sickness (SARI) surveillance in containment and buffer zones.

13.  With the evolving state of affairs, laboratory community is constantly being strengthened. From a scenario of a single laboratory outfitted to undertake testing for Covid in January, presently 1705 laboratories are conducting COVID-19 Testing. Laboratories have been established in troublesome terrains like Ladakh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland in addition to different North Japanese states, Lakshadweep and Andaman & Nicobar island. At present the testing is about 1 million assessments a day (which interprets to 720 assessments per million inhabitants per day), a lot increased than that stipulated by WHO which is 140 assessments per million inhabitants per day. A complete of 5,51,89,226samples have been examined as far as on 11thSeptember 2020.Whereas there have been no indigenous producers of laboratory diagnostics or testing machines for Covid, at the moment we have now an indigenous manufacturing capability of greater than 10 lakh kits/day.

14.   For acceptable administration of COVID-19 instances, a 3 tier association of well being services [(i) COVID Care Center with isolation beds for mild or pre-symptomatic cases; (ii) Dedicated COVID Health Centre (DCHC) with oxygen supported isolation beds for moderate cases and (iii) Dedicated COVID Hospital (DCH) with ICU beds for severe cases] has been applied. Tertiary care hospitals below ESIC, Defence, Railways, paramilitary forces, Metal Ministry and so on. have been leveraged for case administration.

As on 12th September, 2020, a complete of 15,284 COVID remedy services with 13,14,646 devoted isolation mattress with out O2 have been created. Additionally, a complete of two,31,093 oxygen supported isolation beds and 62,717 ICU beds (including32,575 ventilator beds)have been created. Fixed monitoring of the illness development, evaluation of accessible infrastructure and planning prematurely for the longer term has averted a serious disaster as was confronted by many developed international locations. As well as, a complete of 12,826 quarantine centres with 5,98,811 beds have been created.

15.    Tips on Medical administration of COVID-19 had been issued and commonly up to date &broadly circulated. These embrace case definition, prevention of an infection management, laboratory prognosis, early supporting remedy, administration of extreme instances and issues. No particular antivirals have been confirmed efficient up to now. Symptomatic remedy for fever and cough, acceptable rehydration, supplemental oxygen remedy stays the mainstay of remedy. We’ve re-purposed the drug Hydroxychloroquine for gentle (however high-risk instances) and for reasonable instances. This was achieved with restricted scientific proof however properly acknowledging that this drug has been used broadly in India for different illnesses the place it’s used for extended durations of time, with good security profile.

As well as, provisions for investigational therapies has additionally been made for utilizing Remdesivir, Convalescent plasma and Tocilizumab for managing extreme instances below shut medical supervision.

With the intent to make sure dissemination of those normal remedy protocols and cut back mortality to most extent, various initiatives have been launched. An AIIMS Corona helpline 9971876591 has been began to information the docs on medical administration. AIIMS Delhi is working the COVID-19 Nationwide Tele-consultation Centre (CoNTeC) which may be reached by calling +91-9115444155. It’s catering to docs, from wherever within the nation, who wish to seek the advice of AIIMS school for the administration of COVID-19 sufferers, in addition to to the general public basically. Telemedicine tips have been issued on 25.03.2020 to offer tele-consultation to sufferers for mitigation of their sickness and prevention of crowding in clinics. It could additionally assist in triage, remedy and counseling for care of unwell sufferers by healthcare suppliers in areas with restricted entry.

A scientific Heart of Excellence (CoE) initiative has additionally been launched by Ministry of Well being & FW with AIIMS, Delhi as apex nodal establishment and State degree CoEs to offer steering on scientific administration protocols. Weekly webinars are being organized by AIIMS to information these State degree CoEs on essential scientific points that docs might require steering on managing Covid instances. These State degree CoEs are anticipated to additional disseminate these of their districts.

To make sure accessibility of high quality remedy for each Covid and non-Covid well being points, to faraway areas, use of telemedicine has been promoted in a giant approach. ‘eSanjeevani’, a web-based complete telemedicine answer is being utilized (in23states) to increase the attain of specialised healthcare companies to lots in each rural areas and remoted communities.

ICMR is establishing a Nationwide Medical Registry on COVID that may present insights into scientific course of COVID-19 illness, its spectrum and final result of sufferers.

16.   13 scientific trials of repurposed medication and harnessing of conventional information utilizing the fashionable drugs method are constructing a portfolio of therapeutic choices for Covid-19 sufferers. Section 2 scientific trial of immunomodulator Sepsivac has been accomplished efficiently. Section 2 scientific trial of the first-ever phytopharmaceutical ACQH is underway. One prophylactic trial of Aswagandha and three trials of Guduchi + Pippali; Yashtimadhu; and polyherbal AYUSH drug (AYUSH-64) are deliberate on reasonably unwell Covid19 sufferers.

An efficient vaccine can be the certain shot device in armamentarium in opposition to this illness. On this entrance, globally, there are round 145 candidate vaccines in preclinical analysis and presently 35 vaccines in scientific trial. In India, a serious focus has been on facilitating the event of COVID19 vaccine. Greater than 30 vaccine candidates have been supported that are in several levels of growth, 3 candidates are in superior stage of Section I/II/III trials and greater than 4 are in superior pre-clinical growth stage.

COVID19 Biorepositories have been setup, which have collected greater than 40,000 samples which have been made accessible to researchers and business for creating diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines.

To coordinate procurement and distribution of Covid vaccine, Authorities of India has constituted a Nationwide Skilled Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 on 7th August, 2020, below the Chairmanship of Member (Well being), NITI Aayog.

17.  Ministry of AYUSH has contributed by way of varied measures for the administration and mitigation of Covid-19. The Ministry really useful tips of self-care for preventive well being measures and boosting immunity. Ministry of AYUSH has additionally issued well being advisories from completely different programs of medication on prophylaxis and immunity promotion which was translated into eight international languages and circulated to Indian Embassies. Numerous AYUSH Hospitals had been designated as quarantine centres, isolation centres, Covid Care Centres and Covid Well being Centres. Round 8.5 lakh Ayush healthcare professionals have been registered on covidwarriors.gov.in. Ministry of AYUSH has shaped an “Inter-disciplinary AYUSH R&D Job Drive”. The Job Drive has formulated and designed scientific analysis protocols for AYUSH prophylactic research and add-on interventions in COVID-19 constructive instances. AYUSH-CSIR collaborative research had been initiated with AYUSH medicines for prophylaxis/remedy. A big scale population-based research by way of AYUSH Analysis Councils and Nationwide Institutes below the Ministry on prophylaxis of AYUSH interventions in focused populations in containment zones is underway. Ministry of AYUSH has additionally initiated impression evaluation of effectiveness, acceptance and utilization of AYUSH advisories & measures in prevention of COVID 19 by way of a cell utility app generally known as AYUSH-Sanjivani app.

18.    States have been requested to evaluate the inventory of their logistic, notably Private Protecting Gear and procure the identical. Whole orders for 1.92 crore PPEs have been positioned by the Central Authorities up to now. The Ministry has already equipped 1.39 Crore PPE Kits and three.43 crore N95 masks to States (as on 11thSeptember, 2020).

Division of Prescribed drugs elevated the manufacturing of drug hydroxychloroquine manifold.  As on 11thSeptember, 2020, MoHFW has issued 10.84 crore tablets of Hydroxychloroquine to States/UTs. India has additionally exported it to greater than 140 international locations.

The Central Authorities has already issued orders to buy 60,948 ventilators to satisfy any  contingencies. As on 11th September 2020, 32,109 ventilators have been allotted to States of which 30,170 have been delivered. The nation is self-sufficient in oxygen and oxygen cylinders. Ministry of Well being &Household Welfare has procured & equipped 1,02,400 oxygen cylinders to numerous States/UTs up to now. As well as, oxygen concentrators are additionally being equipped to States.

19.    One of many main challenges was to establish and practice a lot of Covid warriors throughout sectors and departments that may be concerned in not solely COVID associated work but in addition for making certain upkeep of different important medical companies. Pooling manpower sources has been achieved from Defence, AYUSH, NCC, NSS, NYK, public sector enterprises, and personal sector.

Regardless of varied constraints and challenges, the Covid warriors rose to the event in serving humanity. The nation feels indebted to the docs, nurses, paramedics, frontline area employees, safety and police personnel, sanitary employees, volunteers and journalists who’ve labored tirelessly to guard our countrymen from Covid. I might request the August Home to put on file the appreciation for the yeoman companies delivered by them.

There had been cases the place healthcare service personnel needed to face harassment, acts of violence, intimidation and hazard to life throughout discharge of their duties. To beat this and help their efforts, Authorities of India promulgated Epidemic Illnesses (Modification) Ordinance, 2020 on 22ndApril 2020.

To construct the capacities of human sources together with the medical manpower who assist managing sufferers in hospitals; in addition to non-medical personnel and area employees concerned in surveillance, logistics and so on., modules have been made accessible on iGOT – Diksha (on-line platform) by DOPT (https://igot.gov.in/igot/). The coaching modules have been translated to regional languages. Near 29.15 lakh individuals have registered for varied programs. This contains 5,699 docs, 86,018 Ayush Professionals, 4,102 Nurses, 963 Allied Well being Professionals, 5,881 frontline employees, 2,70,736 volunteers and 25,42,892 different contributors. About 18.96 lakh course completions have taken place on iGOT – Diksha platform. Coaching Sources for medical and non-medical personnel have additionally been made accessible on the web site of Ministry of Well being & Household Welfare.

We’ve now moved from ‘managing journey associated instances’ to containing clusters and enormous outbreaks attributable to native transmission to large unfold of an infection to city, peri-urban and rural areas. This might require concerted effort by the Authorities with individuals’s participation to forestall massive scale morbidity and mortality. Equally essential is to keep up the success achieved in administration of reproductive maternal and little one well being, vaccine preventable ailments, non-communicable ailments, tuberculosis, vector borne ailments corresponding to Kala Azar and Malaria. Therefore there may be an elevated thrust for managing non-Covid important companies.

20.   MoHFW web site is being up to date every day to offer normal public with info on present standing of COVID-19 unfold in India. Common press releases are being issued and press briefings are being held.

Communication materials and toolkits have been developed (pamphlets, poster, audio and AV movies) and supplied to the States/UTs on COVID-19 illness, preventive steps required to be taken by the communities, dealing with of myths and stigma associated to illness and to broadly publicize the helpline numbers accessible. Communication materials can be being hosted on MoHFW web site and thru social media. Dos and Don’ts are being broadly circulated by way of SMS (550 crore SMSs have been despatched). Caller-tune messages are being despatched to telecom subscribers in 13 languages and 117 crore subscribers have been reached.

A devoted name heart / helpline (1075) had been began within the preliminary days to information neighborhood at massive which is being utilized by the residents very successfully and regularly. A complete of 41.04 lakh calls have been acquired up to now.

21. Division of Bio Expertise, Division of Science and Expertise, CSIR and Division of Well being Analysis coated the complete chain of scientific and technological options holistically for COVID-19 by way of academia, R&D labs, business, startups and NGOs. These options embrace fundamental scientific research on the habits, transmission and results of virus, mathematical modeling of the pandemic, and merchandise such because the world class ventilators, diagnostic kits, vaccines, therapeutics, antiviral coatings, disinfectants, PPEs, masks, cell testing cubicles and hospitals, synthetic intelligence based mostly instruments, and knowledge dissemination to lots.

For these functions, a complete mapping of our whole startup ecosystem was achieved to establish and help over 110 expertise startups and over 20 industries for business manufacturing. Over 150 tasks in all areas of virus habits have been initiated.

22.    Authorities of India is commonly coordinating with WHO headquarters, regional workplace and nation workplace to get updates on evolving state of affairs.  Authorities of India has additionally supplied help to different international locations in tackling the problem posed by the Covid. India has performed a serious function in shaping up G20 and BRICS response to Covid. India can be extending help wherever required to neighboring SAARC international locations.

23.    The Authorities is proactively figuring out gaps and constructing an Atmanirbhar Bharat that may be capable to take challenges of comparable pandemics, epidemics and disasters in future. An Expenditure Finance Memorandum of Rs. 65,560.98 Crores below Prime Minister Atmanirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana for strengthening is into account. This contains funding in analysis, healthcare and public well being infrastructure with explicit concentrate on pandemic administration.

24.    I might urge all Hon’ble members of Parliament that battle for Covid continues to be removed from over. On one hand, once we are in stage of Unlock in order to revive financial system, and have a balanced method, it is necessary that sustained neighborhood help is ensured constantly to manage the unfold of Covid an infection & break its chain of transmission.

Your help is essential to create consciousness in your respective constituencies for Covid Acceptable Behaviour. The straightforward public well being measures of carrying of masks/face covers, frequent hand washing, respiratory etiquettes, and bodily distancing “2-gaj kidoori” as a social vaccine, if practiced in a accountable method, will assist us management/suppress the transmission of Covid.

25.    I want to inform this home that the Authorities is taking all vital measures to forestall unfold of the COVID in India.

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