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PM Chairs High Level Meeting To Review COVID-19, Vaccination Situation, Amid New Variant Detection

The PMO said that Modi also reviewed the national situation relating to COVID-19 cases and test positivity rates.

Photo Credit : PMO


Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Amid the fear of the upcoming third wave and new COVID-19, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday chaired a comprehensive meeting to review the public health preparedness and vaccination-related situation for COVID-19, informed the Prime Minister's Office (PMO). 

PM was briefed about the global trends on COVID-19 infections and cases. Officials highlighted that countries across the world have experienced multiple Coronavirus cases surges since the onset of the pandemic.  

During the meeting, PM directed that there is a need to increase the second dose coverage and that states need to be sensitised on the need to ensure that all those who have got the first dose are given the second dose timely. 

Officials briefed the PM about the new Variant of Concern ‘Omicron’ along with its characteristics and the impact seen in various countries. Its implications for India were also discussed. 

According to the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the new COVID-19 variant identified as B.1.1.529 - has been discovered in countries like Botswana (3 cases), South Africa (6 cases) and Honk Kong (1 case). Apart from that, the new variant has been found in Belgium and Israel as well. 

Modi directed officials to work closely with state governments to ensure that there is proper awareness at the state and district level. He directed that intensive containment and active surveillance should continue in clusters reporting higher cases and required technical support be provided to states which are reporting higher cases presently. 

Meanwhile, the Centre Government on Thursday asked all states and union territories to conduct rigorous screening and testing of all international travellers coming from or transiting through South Africa, Hong Kong and Botswana. 

In a letter addressed to the additional chief secretary, principal secretary, secretary (Health) of all states and union territories, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan asked them to ensure that samples of travellers turning positive are sent to designated genome sequencing laboratories promptly.

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