Amid the rising COVID-19 and influenza cases in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a high-level meeting to assess the status and preparedness of public health response to these infections.
In the meeting, he advised precaution and vigilance. He also emphasised the need to enhance lab surveillance and testing of all Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) cases. He also asked for ramping up the genome sequencing of the samples collected. The Prime Minister also asked the health ministry officials to conduct mock drills in hospitals to assess their preparedness for the situation.
As per reports, India recorded 1,134 new cases on Wednesday and this was the second time in the month that the tally reached to 1000 mark.
PM Modi was informed that the country is witnessing a slight increase in the COVID cases trajectory with average daily cases being recorded at over 888 and a weekly positivity rate reported as 0.98 up till March 22. He was also informed about the rising cases of H1N1 and H3N2 in the past few months.
The action course taken on the directions given by the Prime Minister during the last Covid-19 review held on December 22, 2022, was also discussed and reviewed in the meeting.
Reportedly, the Prime Minister was told that the availability and prices of 20 main COVID drugs, 12 other drugs, eight buffer drugs and one influenza drug are being monitored.
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As per the health ministry, five new deaths have been reported and one death each has been reported by Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat and Maharashtra while one fatality was reconciled by Kerala.
As per quoted experts, the symptoms of H3N2 and COVID can coincide as both can cause fever, cough and breathlessness in affected people. H3N2 is reportedly causing serious illness in patients who are immunocompromised or are elderly or children.