Is it true that the decentralized approach Mumbai has adopted in COVID-19 containment needs to be adopted at the national level?
“Control rooms were created for engaging with citizens but they were not at Municipal Corporation level but were at ward level, for each of the 24 wards. Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation which receives lab results passes it on to the respective ward acting as a hub during the process and helping in the reduction of caseload in each ward. Each Ward room has been equipped with 30 telephone lines, managed by 10 telephone operator, 10 doctors as well as 10 ambulances. There were also 10 dashboards highlighting information about the availability of beds. This ensured that citizens did not face any difficulty in getting admission to hospitals.” This was pointed out by the Joint Secretary, Health Ministry, Shri. Lav Agarwal, at the COVID-19 media briefing, held in the national capital today.
“In addition to these, 800 SUVs where refurbished to convert them into makeshift ambulances. A software platform was created to track and manage these ambulances. All these systems work together to ensure that patients do not face problems in finding bed.” The Joint Secretary said, appreciating the systematic efforts of the Municipal Corporation, in fighting COVID-19 in one of the biggest cities in the country.
The way in which Pune contained the upsurge of COVID-19 cases drew praise from the Ministry, as a fine example that shows how containment measures can help restrict the spread of the disease.
When Pune witnessed 69.7% case positivity rate in the first week of March 2021, it started measures like night curfew, imposed from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. This resulted in two things:
“We have observed that strict measures like restrictions on mass gatherings and on intermingling of people along with closing of non-essential activities for a period of 15 days reduce the rate of growth of cases and cases start plateauing”, said the Joint Secretary.