Focus: GS-III Disaster Management, Science and Technology

Why in news?

  • Senior scientists and health officials have said that India currently is showing no evidence of any community transmission and that enough tests were being done to pick up any early indication of third stage transmission.
  • So far there is no evidence for the need to go in for mass testing.

India’s Handling of the Spread

  • India started proactive action from January 17 onwards, whereas our first cases came in the end of January.
  • The country had put in early measures to ensure that transmission stays localised and any indications otherwise are picked up.
  • ICMR will be getting the results of their Random Sampling by 18th March 2020, which will give an idea of where we are headed.

Stages of spread of Coronavirus

There are Four states of the spread of the disease:

  • Stage 1 is getting imported cases
  • Stage 2 is local transmission
  • Stage 3 is community transmission
  • Stage 4 is when it turns into an epidemic.
4 STAGES OF A PANDEMIC CoronavirusHOW WE CAN KEEP IT IN STAGE 11-111 Quarantine I Anyone coming from countries affected by Covid-19 outbreak is being quarantined for 14 days, regardless of symptoms Contact tracing I If a person has been found positive, everyone he or she may have come in contact with is Out under surveillance. If they show any symptoms, they are tested and quarantined too Stop mass gathering I Most states have closed schools, cinema halls or aren't organising public events Awareness public is being made aware of hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette Prelnration Scaling up infrastructure—testing facility, isolation beds and acute management of positive cases—taking place simultaneously transmission from positive STAGE Il STAGE IV Disease takes shape cf an epidemic with no clear endpoint. Italy and China are already there STAGE 111 Disease spreads in community, large areas gets Cases mostly imported from affected countries STAGE I 4,590 O'.'crall capacity far daily testing France India is here • 90 TESTING Tcsting» Samples each lab CAPACITY can test daily GLOBAL RATE OF POSITIVE TESTS 1.3% utilisation it present Number Of tests and positivity rate in India No of tests No. of positive 78 6,500 performed cases South Korea 4.2% 56,652 tests of I„'bb positive, 25,568 results awaited fig.•res Graph'" Sunil Singh Italy 9,462 tests, of positive, some results awaited UK pcsiti'.'ltv,' rate concluded tests, of which 13 positive Austria 0.6% 321 tests, of Ahich 2 positive, some results awaited India 1.2% 78 positive cases (Positivity rate may be 2.2% 762 tests, Of Rhich 17 positive, 179 results awaited 3.1% concluded tests, cf which 14 positive higher because patients being tested are either those with travel history to affected country their contacts)

Is India not testing enough?

  • Several experts have noted that India isn’t testing enough, which could be the reason for its relatively low number of COVID-19 cases, while also exposing the country to an outbreak.
  • Currently, 63 laboratories (62 Virus Research and Diagnostic Laboratories and 1 National Centre for Disease Control) are functioning to test COVID-19, and nine laboratories are expected to start functioning shortly.
  • The ICMR has also noted that it has intensified random sample testing of people who display flu-like symptoms but don’t have a travel history to any of the coronavirus-hit countries.

Does the spread of Virus slow down because of Summer?

Since the virus hasn’t seen many seasons, we cannot say conclusively that the virus will slow down with higher temperature.

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