Hon’ble Lt. Governor today chaired Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) meeting to review the management of COVID-19 patients. The meeting was attended by Hon’ble Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister, Minister (Revenue), Chief Secretary, Pr. Secy. (Home), Commissioner of Police, JS (DM), General Officer Commanding (HQ), Delhi Area, MoHWF, Pr. Secretary (Health), Divisional Commissioner and other senior officers.
The DDMA meeting was held in pursuance of the guidance given by the Hon’ble Home Minister in the meeting held on 21.06.2020 and detailed communication of MHA dated 22.06.2020 to put in place a robust mechanism for surveillance and to provide timely care to the covid positive patients with minimum inconvenience to the public.
It was discussed that the twin goals to be achieved through effective surveillance system and home isolation are to ensure containment of local spread including in the family and community and provision of timely medical care in case medical condition of the covid positive person in home isolation worsens. Therefore, it is absolutely essential that only those COVID positive persons are allowed for home isolation who have adequate facility at home to keep them separate from family. This would require physical verification by surveillance teams. Similarly, for monitoring of medical condition of covid positive persons, trained professionals are required to daily follow up with the concerned individual. If a robust system to achieve these twin objectives is put in place, the risk of further spread of disease from a COVID positive person to other persons during home isolation can be minimized and medical help can be extended timely to those patients whose condition worsens. An SoP should be framed to achieve these twin objectives keeping in view the resource availability and public convenience.
It was informed that as on date, testing of COVID-19 is being done by two methods i.e. Rapid test for COVID-19 antigen and RT-PCR test. It was decided that all cases who test positive by Rapid test for COVID-19 antigen will be examined by the Medical Officer on duty at the testing site to assess the severity of illness i.e. pre-symptomatic/asymptomatic/mild/moderate or severe. The assessment made by the Medical Officer on site shall effectively constitute an assessment made at the COVID Care Centre.
Regarding RT-PCR Test, it was informed that as per the existing practice, districts receive reports on ICMR Portal for the cases who have tested positive. Also the district wise details of positive patients as mapped by GSDL team are shared electronically by a State Nodal Officer with the realigned districts.
The patient shall be allowed home isolation if, as per the assessment of Home Isolation team sent by the District Surveillance Officer, the patient is mild/pre-symptomatic/asymptomatic and has a residence of two rooms or a separate room and a separate toilet for the patient. He/she will be provided a contact number for any consultation required by him along with details of CATS Ambulance call number for transfer to hospital in case symptoms develop.
If the said patient has moderate/severe symptoms with co-morbidities, he shall be transferred to the CCC/CHC/Hospital. In case his residence is not found to be fit for home isolation by the surveillance team, the patient will be admitted to COVID Care Centre for isolation as per MoHFW guidelines.
Those who are in home isolation should follow home isolation guidelines laid down by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and should stay in touch with health care providers so that if their condition deteriorates, they can be moved to the COVID hospitals.
The proposal was agreed by all as it will ensure that twin goal as outlined above i.e. containing the spread of the disease and providing timely medical care as and when needed, to save precious lives - will be met.
Hon’ble LG once again emphasized that the department should put in place robust surveillance mechanism to ensure that there is no deviation from above guidelines.