Kerala

Health dept. all set to prevent disease outbreaks

KANNUR-KERALA13-08-2019; Cleaning up operation at a flood-hit house near Sreekantapuram in Kannur on Tuesday-PHOTO;S_K_MOHAN.

KANNUR-KERALA13-08-2019; Cleaning up operation at a flood-hit house near Sreekantapuram in Kannur on Tuesday-PHOTO;S_K_MOHAN.   | Photo Credit: S_K_MOHAN

Coordinated activities taken up across State

The Health Department, taking a leaf out of its experience in handling the post-flood situation last year, has taken all precautions and made all preparations to ensure that there are no disease outbreaks in the aftermath of floods this time, Health Minister K.K. Shylaja has said.

Addressing mediapersons after chairing a review meeting of senior health officials at the Directorate of Health Services (DHS) here on Tuesday, Ms. Shylaja said all health-related activities were being coordinated at the district level by the respective district health administrations, including making medical assistance available to flood victims at relief camps and accident sites, keeping isolation wards ready in hospitals and making adequate quantities of medicines and supplies available.

The Kerala Medical Services Corporation has already arranged for extra quantities of bleaching powder and chlorine tablets, considering the large-scale requirement of these for sanitation activities post floods.

Control room

The 24-hour control room (0471-2302160) at the DHS is closely monitoring all activities in districts.

The focus right now will be on emergency medical relief, tending to physical injuries and sicknesses in camps, disease surveillance and ensuring that safe drinking water is available for the people.

Special measures are being taken to ensure that there are no outbreaks of infectious diseases. Going by the State’s experience last year, special attention needs to be taken to ensure that flood victims as well as rescue and relief workers who have been in contact with floodwaters are administered doxycycline prophylaxis.

Ms. Shylaja said that arrangements have been made for providing drugs for lifestyle diseases to those who are on a regular drug regimen.

Steps for dialysis

Hospitals have also been asked to make arrangements for dialysis and chemotherapy for those who are on these treatments.

Hygiene in flood relief camps are being managed with the help of local bodies.

A special team has been engaged to counsel flood victims and to take care of any post-traumatic stress disorders. All health-related advisories and standard protocols to be followed during this time have been put up on the website of the department.

Call centre

Any health-related queries of the public can be directed to Disha call centre (1056 / 0471-2552056), which functions round the clock.

Principal Secretary (Health) Rajan Khobragade; DHS R.L. Saritha; National Health Mission State Mission Director Kesavendra Kumar; and Ayush Secretary Sharmila Mary Joseph were also present.

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Printable version | Feb 29, 2020 7:24:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/health-dept-all-set-to-prevent-disease-outbreaks/article29085392.ece

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