Punjab Government announces emergency measures to combat coronavirus menace
Cabinet approves notification to set up `flu corners’ in all government and private hospitals
Chandigarh: Amid the growing scare over the deadly Coronavirus, the Punjab Government on Monday announced emergency measures, including setting up of Flu Corners in all government and private hospitals, to prepare for any exigency arising from the epidemic.
The Flu Corners will screen all suspected cases of respiratory tract infections at the earliest and ensure that movement of such cases is restricted in order to prevent the spread of the disease.
The Cabinet, at a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, took stock of the situation triggered by the global epidemic, even as one confirmed case each of the disease was reported from Delhi and Telangana.
The Cabinet approved the Punjab Epidemic Diseases, COVID-19 Regulations, 2020 under the ambit of section 2, 3 & 4 of the Epidemic Diseases Act. 1897, to combat the menace of COVID-19 (Corona Virus Diseases 2019), said an official spokesperson after the meeting. A notification to this effect will be issued soon, he added.
No private laboratory has been authorized to take or test sample of COVID-19 in the State of Punjab, as per the notification approved by the Cabinet. Further, no person/institution or organization will use any print or media in any form for giving information COVID-19 without prior permission of Department of Health & Family Welfare, Punjab. Spread of any rumors or unscientific information regarding COVID-19 will be a punishable offence under the notification, said the spokesperson.
As per the Cabinet decision, all the hospitals in the state are being directed to take a suspected patient’s history of travel to any country or area from where spread of disease is being reported, and also history of coming in contact with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, from case of respiratory tract infections or case presenting with symptoms similar to corona virus.
If there is any history of travel or history of contact with a case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days of development of symptoms, the person has to be kept in hospital isolation and Department of Health has to be informed immediately by that doctor/hospital/clinic.
Any person having travelled to a country or area from where COVID-19 is being reported has to self report to nearest Government Hospital or call at helpline number 104 to inform about the travel details so that necessary actions could be undertaken by the Health Department.
The Health Department will have rights to admit a person and isolate, if a person has visited an area where corona virus is endemic and person is symptomatic in consultation with Deputy Commissioner of the district concerned. In case cases of COVID-19 are reported from a defined geographic area, district administration of the district will have rights to implement containment measures in order to prevent spread of the disease. Deputy Commissioner of each district is authorized to take action as per the notification for COVID-19 in the area of jurisdiction of the district.
A committee shall be constituted and notified by Department of Health and Family Welfare under the chairmanship of Deputy Commissioner involving SSP, Civil Surgeon and other officers of the district to take decision for measures for containment of COVID-19. Any person/ institution or organization disobeying any regulation or order made under this act shall be deemed to have committed an offence punishable under section 188 of Indian penal Code (45 of 1860).