Omicron: Plans afoot to contain spread in Kerala

reparation will be completed in three phases.

Representative image | Photo: ANI

Thiruvananthapuram: Amid the growing concerns of high transmissibility of the Omicron variant of Covid-19, Kerala has started taking action to contain the spread of the virus. The state government has issued instructions to the governing bodies of the districts and the institutions under the health department. The preparations to prevent the spread of the virus will be completed in three phases.

First phase

The first phase will be initiated if the number of patients increases or doubles or if the number of patients in the ICU increases by 50 per cent from that of January 1.

Under the first phase, primary treatment facilities will be identified by avoiding educational institutions. The number of oxygen beds, ICU, and ventilators will be increased by 20 per cent.

Service of employees from other sections including dental, homoeopathy etc will be assured for COVID prevention activities.

It will be observed whether clusters and micro-containment zones are being formed with the rise in the number of patients. The instructions issued by the disaster management authority will be carried out. The inspections in clusters will be increased. A special facility will be arranged to isolate the patients.

A fixed number of samples will be collected from the clusters for genome sequencing to confirm Omicron infection. The amount of oxygen available in the state will be analysed. The stock of medicines and other medical instruments will be increased.

Second phase

As per the direction, the second phase of action will be initiated if the number of Covid patients in the ICU doubles or if the number of Covid patients becomes 10 per cent of the patients hospitalised in various districts.

The number of primary level treatment facilities will be increased. The number of oxygen beds, ICUs and ventilators will be increased by 30 per cent. Non-Covid treatment will be limited. More clusters and micro-containment zones will be identified. Active surveillance in clusters will be initiated. Samples will be sent for genome sequencing.

The stock of liquefied oxygen will be increased. Those having respiratory problems will be kept under home quarantine.

Third phase

If the number of Covid patients in the hospitals in the districts increases by 25 per cent, the third phase of the preventive measures will begin in the state.

Primary treatment facilities and field-level hospitals will be started. Covid beds set aside for Covid treatment in medical colleges and government hospitals will be utilized. Non-Covid treatment will be limited. Private hospitals will be equipped to take in more patients. If the patients in the government hospitals occupy almost 70 per cent of the beds, then new patients may be referred to private hospitals.

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