Monday 6 April 2020 2:07 AM UTC
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM April 6: Rajyasabha T.V. report lauds Kerala’s efforts to contain the deadly COVID-19. Following is the report published on April 4 2020, Nearly 300 positive cases, over 40 cured, and two deaths.
These are the COVID-19 numbers on Saturday from Kerala, the state that reported its first and also the country’s first case in January.
Of the 295 positive cases that Kerala has seen so far, more than 200 came from abroad – essentially Malayalis residing in different parts of the world. Seven are foreign tourists, and nearly 80 people contracted the disease
from primary contact.
Ever since a Wuhan University student became its first COVID-19 positive patient on January 30, 2020, Kerala has taken the lead in monitoring, isolating, testing and treating the people found positive.
Compared to the numbers from the worst affected state Maharashtra, its strategies seem to have made a radical difference. Maharashtra reported its first positive case on March 9, 2020, 38 days after Kerala’s first case.
But in less than a month, COVID-19 positive cases have touched nearly
500 in Maharashtra.
So what is Kerala doing right?
Over the last one month, Kerala strengthened its testing capabilities. Compared to just 574 samples on March 5, the state tested over 9,000 samples on April 3.
Along with speed, it has also intensified the testing. Earlier while only those with at least four to five symptoms of COVID-19 were being tested, now even people with just one or two symptoms are being tested.
And since rapid testing is not foolproof, people are being tested multiple times, and have been asked to stay quarantined at home for the prescribed period.
Close to 1,70,000 people have been quarantined, most of them at home. And to ensure that they don’t go out unnecessarily, the state government has ensured that essential items are home-delivered to them. For this,
the government has enlisted thousands of volunteers.
Besides home delivering essentials, the volunteers also work in over 1300 community kitchens that are operating in all 941 Panchayats in the state and feed over 1,50,000 people daily.
These community kitchens cater to the poor who have been the worst-affected due to the lockdown. While the financially weak are given food at their doorstep for free, the rest of the public can buy meals at very
The state government is also giving free ration with an appeal to people to pay for food grains if they can. The differently-abled, the aged, and those quarantined are being home delivered rations.
With a large migrant workforce now stuck, the state government is making efforts to house and keep them disease-free. Over 5,000 camps have been set up for migrant labourers, where soaps, sanitizers and masks are provided.
The state government has also brought out brochures and released videos in Hindi, Oriya and Bengali to spread its message. The state government has also worked on communication.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan conducts a daily press briefing via video conferencing. Besides giving a daily report, he also reminds everyone about the need for social distancing.
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