COVID-19 | Negative RT-PCR report must for travellers from China, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand, South Korea

Union Health Secretary writes to States to conduct mock drill on Decemeber 27 for COVID-19 management preparedness

December 24, 2022 01:05 pm | Updated December 25, 2022 08:51 am IST - NEW DELHI

All international passengers arriving from China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand have to get a mandatory RT-PCR test. | File Photo

All international passengers arriving from China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand have to get a mandatory RT-PCR test. | File Photo | Photo Credit: B. Jothi Ramalingam

International travellers arriving from China, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand and South Korea will have to bring RT-PCR test reports when they travel to India, Minister of Health and Family Welfare Mansukh Mandaviya announced on December 24, 2022.

Filling up of Air Suvidha forms for declaring COVID-19 status will also be made mandatory for these passengers. Those who are found to be symptomatic or test positive for COVID-19 on their arrival in India will be put under quarantine, the Minister said.

Random testing of 2% of passengers on every international flight also started from Saturday morning.

Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan has also written to States and Union Territories to conduct mock drills at all health facilities across the country on December 27 in order to ensure operational readiness for management of COVID-19.

The focus of the drill will be to ensure adequate bed capacities including oxygen supported isolation beds and ventilator supported beds, availability of doctors, nurses, paramedics, AYUSH doctors, ASHA and anganwadi workers, as well as preparedness of testing laboratories. Availability of essential drugs, ventilators, bilevel positive airway pressure machines or BIPAPs, SPO2 kits, personal protective equipment (PPE) kits and N-95 masks as well as medical oxygen infrastructure such as oxygen concentrators, cylinders, PSA plants, liquid medical oxygen storage tanks, medical gas pipeline systems will also have to be ensured.

The mock drill will be done under the supervision of District Collectors or Magistrates along with officers of the health department of the State. The facility-wise data for all districts will have to be uploaded by the District Surveillance Officer in coordination with the the Chief Medical Health Officers.

A separate letter on medical oxygen was also sent from the Health Ministry’s Additional Secretary, Manohar Agnani, to States and UTs asking them to reinvigorate oxygen control rooms as well as onboard health facilities utilising oxygen on Oxygen Demand Aggregation System to enable monitoring of daily oxygen demand and consumption.

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