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Death rate of COVID-19 at 3.2 pc, recovery rate over 25 pc, GoM told

06-05-2020

New Delhi, (UNI) The Group of Ministers (GoM) was apprised on Tuesday that the death rate in the country stood at around 3.2 per cent while the recovery rate was more than 25 per cent, a positive effect of the nationwide lockdown in the country along with cluster management and containment strategy. At the 14th meeting of the GoM held here under the chairmanship of Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, various aspects related to Coronavirus pandemic were discussed. The GoM was told that genome sequencing of strains of the novel Coronavirus isolated from patients in different parts of the country has been initiated. 

During the in depth deliberation on containment strategy and management aspects of COVID-19, as well as the measures being taken by the Centre and various states, the GoM was informed that states have been asked to follow and further strengthen their contingency plans to combat COVID-19 on the basis of classification of the districts into red, orange and green districts. 

Strengthening capacity of states including devoting adequate resources for creating dedicated COVID-19 hospitals, equipping the medical institutions with adequate number of PPEs, ventilators and other essential equipment were also discussed in detail. Various recommendations of the Union Government for the containment zone management pertaining to indicators, root causes and action required were already shared with the states/UTs for better and effective management of COVID-19 by the Health and Family Welfare ministry. 

The Empowered Group-3 looking after ensuring essential medical equipment such as PPEs, masks, ventilators etc., apprised the GoM regarding the adequacy and availability of PPEs, masks, ventilators, drugs and other essential equipment against the requirement. GoM was informed that domestic manufacturers have reached the production capacity of nearly 2.5 lakh PPEs per day and about 2 lakhs N95 masks per day which is sufficient to meet the requirement of the country in near future. 

In addition, manufacturing of ventilatorsby domestic manufacturers has also been started and orders have been placed. Steps have been taken to maintain the quality norms for PPEs, masks and ventilators. Adequate quantity of oxygen cylinders is also being procured. GoM highlighted the need for ensuring that stringent measures of quality control were ensured for PPEs, mask, ventilators etc. Random batch sampling for ensuring compliance and adherence to the quality standards laid down were also stressed upon by the GoM. 

Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla, Chairman of Empowered Group-11 informed the GoM that they were monitoring and supervising the strategic issues arriving out of the measures taken so far in containing the pandemic. He also apprised the GoMthat at different stages during lockdown, decisions on graded liberalisation were taken after consultations with stakeholders, cutting across various ministries and other Empowered Groups. 

A presentation was made by Ajay Sawhney, Secretary (MeITY) and Chairman of Empowered Group-9, dealing with technology solutions and data management for combatting COVID-19. Various aspects pertaining to the performance, impact and benefits of Arogya-Setu application which has been downloaded by close to nine crore users as on May 4 were discussed during the meeting  People have informed about their health status on the application which has helped in tracing those suffering with any symptoms for COVID-19 containment. GoM was also informed that mechanism has also been devised to reach out to the people who have landline or featured phones through Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS) in local languages for better results. GoM expressed satisfaction over the work done by the Ministries and the Empowered Groups.


Dr Harsh Vardhan stated that the use of technology was integral for the containment strategy and was helping the states to manage the COVID-19 in a more effective manner. GoM was also informed that under Prime Minister Garib Kalyan Package (PMGKP) as on May 4, 29.38 lakh MT has been distributed to 58.77 crore beneficiaries by 36 states/UTs as first month (April) entitlement and 5.82 lakh MT has been distributed to 11.63 crore beneficiaries by 20 states/UTs as second month (May) entitlement so far. In total, 66.08 lakh MT food grain has been lifted by 36 states/UTs from Food Corporation of India so far.
An amount of Rs 6,868.74 crore has been transferred to Ujjawala (PMUY) beneficiaries, 4.98 crore PMUY cylinders have been booked and Rs 4.72 crore has been delivered during April-May,2020. 


Under the scheme, financial sanction for 8.18 crore beneficiaries' (Farmers) for Rs 2,000 each, has been generated during 20-21 and Rs 16,364 crore has been released under DBT Cash Transfers to farmers during 20-21  As support for senior citizens, widows and Divyang, first instalment of funds of Rs 500 per beneficiary has been released for all 2.812 crore accounts of eligible beneficiaries, amounting to Rs 1,405 crore. The next instalment of Rs 500 will go in the second fortnight. 

So far, 20.05 crore women Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana accounts are being credited Rs 500 per account as cash transfers under PMGKP. Altogeher 9.27 lakh members of EPFO had availed the facility of online withdrawal amounting to Rs 2,895 crore

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