Increase Covid testing, Centre tells Goa, 12 other States

| NOVEMBER 25, 2021, 12:10 AM IST


Citing multiple surges in coronavirus cases in several countries, the Union Health Ministry has written to the Goa government along with 12 other States and Union Territories, including West Bengal, Kerala, Maharashtra, and Punjab, expressing concerns over declining weekly testing rates in some districts.

In a letter to Nagaland, Sikkim, Maharashtra, Kerala, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Rajasthan, West Bengal, and Ladakh, Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan stressed on maintaining high testing rates given the recent increase in travelling due to events like marriages, festivals, and vacations that have recently concluded or are underway.

"A decrease in testing would undermine the actual infection spread within the community," Bhushan said in the letter.

Also, with the onset of winter and increased pollution in some states, prevalence of ILI/SARI and respiratory distress symptoms should be closely monitored, with tests being conducted regularly for timely monitoring and clustering of cases for early hotspot identification, the official underlined.

With a majority of countries seeing multiple surges in Covid cases in recent times, there is a need for continued vigil given the unpredictable and contagious nature of the disease.

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