5,000 ‘focus volunteers’ to be deployed

These ‘quarantine monitors’ will be paid for their services

Published - June 13, 2020 11:28 pm IST - CHENNAI

The Greater Chennai Corporation will deploy 5,000 “quarantine monitors” to help and monitor quarantined residents who have tested positive for COVID-19. All the 15 zones of the Corporation have started recruiting the “quarantine monitors” who will be paid for their services.

Each worker will be in charge of five to ten streets in the city, helping residents in all aspects of COVID-19 recovery and prevention. All the 40,000 streets in the city would be monitored, generating report on violations by persons on quarantine. The report will be segregated and sent to COVID-19 response team of 200 wards of the Corporation.

A large number of residents on home isolation have started violating the norms pertaining to COVID-19 containment, creating a scare among residents on the spread of COVID-19 in the city.

Many of the zones have started recruiting the 'quarantine monitors' for streets where residents are vulnerable to COVID-19 infection, giving priority to such streets with COVID-19 positive cases.

As many as 209 persons were recruited on Saturday in a zone to cover 1,045 streets. The number will increase in in a few days.

Corporation Deputy Commissioner (Revenue and Finance) Meghanath Reddy said the workers would be called “FOCUS volunteers, which means they are friends of COVID-19 citizens under surveillance”.

The civic body has put in place the home quarantine and isolation management system to facilitate self isolation for 14 days for COVID-19 positive individuals, their contacts, persons who returned from foreign countries, domestic flight passengers, train passengers, passengers from hotspot States, inter-State travellers and so on.

“The focus volunteers will be citizen-friendly. Residents are advised to call them for assistance pertaining to COVID-19. The mobile numbers of the focus volunteers will be shared with all residents of the streets. They will reach the residents’ homes to supply medicine and provisions,” said Mr. Meghanath Reddy.

Licensed inspectors and property tax assessors will guide the quarantine monitors in helping the residents who need support during the pandemic.

In a press meet at Chintadripet following a COVID-19 death on Saturday, Minister D. Jayakumar said the Corporation had identified eight lakh senior citizens who need care during the pandemic. Such elderly residents can call the quarantine monitors of their streets for help.

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