Tamil Nadu

Govt. sets up 12 committees to manage treatment of persons with co-morbidities

File photo: A health worker inside a protective chamber lifts a swab sample from a person at the walk-in sample kiosk for Coronavirus testing center at Bharathi Womens college, Broadway, Chennai.   | Photo Credit: B. Jothi Ramalingam

Separate committees have been formed for framing guidelines to manage the treatment of persons with co-morbidities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The government has involved various specialists, super-specialists and associations in developing guidelines.

Health Secretary Beela Rajesh said the move was aimed at intensifying the cocooning of the vulnerable population, keeping co-morbid conditions such diabetes and hypertension under control, and ensuring that there are no deaths. “We have formed 12 such committees for diabetes, hypertension, obstetrics and gynaecology, cancer, paediatrics and tuberculosis. This is being done based on the public-private partnership model, and with NGOs. We want to map every person, intensify treatment and awareness, and provide special care. They will be provided counselling and special supplements to improve their immunity. The panels will chalk out an action plan to take care of the vulnerable population,” she said. “Patients will be monitored to, for instance, determine whether diabetes is being treated properly and kept under control. Doctors will advise them on various precautionary measures against COVID-19, like the wearing of masks and the washing of hands,” she added.

In a letter to all the health directorates, she said that past experience showed that persons with co-morbid conditions such as diabetes and hypertension, immuno-compromised conditions, and those in old age were more prone to be affected by COVID-19. To protect such vulnerable populations, detailed micro-plans for prevention, treatment and post-recovery care needed to be drawn up.

Private sector participation with the involvement of the respective associations such as those for diabetes and hypertension to render intensive treatment for the respective disease groups, the formation of patient support groups on WhatsApp for monitoring, follow-up and support, the maintenance of a disease registry, the provision of intensive treatment with close monitoring at the field level by village health nurse/community health nurse/block medical officer, the prescription of specific diet for each of these patient groups, and the integration of the Indian System of Medicine were recommended. Accordingly, committees with relevant specialist doctors have been formed for dialysis/renal transplant patients, cancer patients and those on chemotherapy and radiotherapy, diabetic patients and hypertensive patients, cardiology, maternal health, child health and haematology, maintaining mental health, tuberculosis, bronchial asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, geriatrics and persons living with HIV/AIDS.

C. N. Raja, State president of the Indian Medical Association - Tamil Nadu Branch, said, “The committees will be involved in data collection and regular monitoring of patients through telemedicine. In case of any surgery, emergency or delivery, we will advise them on the measures to be followed and provide psychological support.”

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Printable version | Oct 1, 2020 6:29:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/committees-constituted-for-management-of-persons-with-co-morbidities/article31617877.ece

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