COVID-19: Awareness Is The Key

Coronavirus is continuing to spread through the world, wreaking havoc along the way. Countries are shutting down to contain the spread, albeit unsuccessfully so far. Only China which was earlier the epicentre of the COVID-19, the disease caused by Coronavirus, has been able to slow the infection. Cases in the country have since plateaud. In India, the disease  claimed its third life Tuesday. A 64-year-old man, who was tested positive in Maharashtra, passed away at Kasturba Hospital. The man had returned from Dubai, from where most of the COVID-19 patients have come from. Maharashtra, as is already known, has the highest number of positive cases in the country. Before this, a man in Karnataka and a woman in Delhi had succumbed to the infection. The toll in the country has gone up to 126 with two more patients testing positive in Karnataka and Noida. The rising number of casaes has forced the government to impose fresh travel restrictions, prohibiting the entry of all passengers from Afghanistan, Philippines, and Malaysia.

In J&K, the COVID-19 has been declared an epidemic now. Government has authorised surveillance personnel to enter any premises to look for suspects infected with the coronavirus. And any person found with Coronavirus like symptoms can be put in a quarantine facility. According to a notification of  Health and Medical Education Department, people have been asked to cooperate and render all possible assistance to facilitate "surveillance, inspection, enquiry and examination". The government has also barred the entry of public in the civil secretariat.  The government has also ordered closure of all public, private and government clubs.

Meanwhile, three more persons have tested positive for the coronavirus in Union Territory of Ladakh, taking the total number of infected persons to six. This has forced the government to quarantine all assengers of all flights from Ladakh and also facilities are being set up at Baltal at Sonamarg to quarantine people entering Kashmir from Ladakh. Similarly, all foreigners visiting the Union Territory shall be quarantined as per the set protocol. In J&K, meanwhile, the number has gone up to three with one more person who had travelled to Saudi Arabia testing positive. This has forced the governmet to take extreme measures. All inter-state buses entering J&K shall be checked and sanitised at an entry point in Kathua.  Government has also advised people to avoid large gatherings during religious festivals.  So far, the government has been pro-active and it is likely to amke a redeeming difference. However, the government would need to devote more resources to create public awareness by the use of mass media. Coronavirus caller tune so far has been a good innovation. But there is the scope and the need to do more.

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