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COVID testing down: J&K govt decides to operate special respiratory OPDs

Srinagar:  Jammu and Kashmir administration has decided to dedicate two hospitals in every district for operating special respiratory OPDs to ramp-up Covid 19 testing and contact tracing.

This follows a steady decline in testing and contact tracing in Kashmir for the last four weeks.

 Official sources said said Divisional Commissioner PK Pole in a review meeting expressed displeasure over “negligence” at the district level in dealing with Covid-19. 

“The divisional commissioner took a serious note of the decline in Rapid Antigen Tests at the district level. He expressed displeasure over fewer symptomatic cases being tested for the Covid by the districts in the last four weeks” they said.

The divisional commissioner has directed all the CMOs to ramp up testing as per revised targets besides keeping the ratio of RAT and RT-PCR in proportion as per the government guidelines.

Minutes of meeting accessed by The Kashmir Monitor reveal that the divisional commissioner has directed to set up special respiratory OPDs in two district hospitals and continue with already existing respiratory clinics.

“The CMOs are directed to increase the testing of symptomatic patients visiting the hospitals. The head of the tertiary hospitals are directed to continue with the practice of operating existing respiratory clinics,” the document said.

 The divisional commissioner has also called for tracing at least 15 contacts of every positive case. “District Contact Tracing teams shall act more pro-actively and trace at least 15 contacts of each positive person to make contact tracing more effective besides breaking the chain of infection,” the document said.

The divisional commissioner has directed all the districts to prepare a detailed inventory of all the Covid-19 related logistics like testing kits, oxygen cylinders, oxygen concentrators, pulse oxymeters and thermometers.

All CMOs have been asked to build their own scientific mechanisms for making home isolation effective and purposeful, sources said.

“All the patients should be visited by the surveillance teams of concerned districts on daily basis besides keeping track of the positive patients through regular phone calls and instant massaging of which an institutional memory should be made in both hard and digital formats,” the document said.