It is hidden to no one that India is second to none in any field. To continue the series Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja on Tuesday, 23rd June was among those honoured for tackling the COVID-19 pandemic when the United Nations celebrated the Public Service Day.
While giving the speech KK Shailaja shared the experience of tackling the Nipah virus and the two floods. She said that the health sector played a crucial role, all helped in tackling COVID-19 promptly. She said, “Right from the time when COVID cases got reported in Wuhan, Kerala got into the track of the WHO and followed every standard operating protocol and international norms and hence, we have been able to keep the contact spread rate to below 12.5 percent and the mortality rate to 0.6 percent”. The function was held on a virtual platform of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and other top UN dignitaries who applauded all the leaders.
Shialaja explained the three strategies adopted by the state to tackle the pandemic included,” trace, quarantine, test, isolate and treat”, “Break the Chain” and “Reverse Quarantine”.
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The website of WHO stated that “public servants globally have continued to work in the community as many people shelter at home, risking their lives to ensure ours can continue. The United Nations will mark Public Service Day 23 June to honour the women and who are risking their lives and health to deliver essential public service amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic”.
While explaining the government’s take on tackling the situation Kerala’s Health Minister said that the government took the four-pronged approach to handle the situation. This includes aggressive testing of potential cases and their contacts, strict quarantining, focused and strategic testing, strict hospital isolation, and best available treatment. After which the second stage started in which everyone is focused on reducing the amount of virus circulating in the society and in that series a campaign was also launched with the name “Break the Chain”. The third stage focused on preventing the virus from reaching the vulnerable population i.e. the elderly, people with co morbidities, pregnant women, and children aged below 10.
She further said, “The state began the preparation for the pandemic very early. The very next day of the WHO’s statement of Caution on a respiratory virus of pandemic potential, we activated our entire surveillance network”. Explaining the surveillance she said, “Even after 142 days of the Pandemic, over 6.5 lakh people kept under surveillance and tracing and isolating thousands of imported cases. Kerala’s local spread is still below 12.5 percent, RO below 0.25 percentage, case fatality rate below 0.6 percentage, and test positive rate (percentage of people tested turning positive for the virus) below two percent.
At the end of the conference, an orchestral piece performed by the UN Orchestra and a video of public servants in action developed from over 80 submissions was also played.