COVID-19: Army issues fresh advisory
In view of rising cases of COVID-19 in the country, the Army has issued a fresh advisory to all its units and formations, recommending precautionary measures to check the spread of the infection.
In the advisory, the Integrated HQ of the Ministry of Defence (Army) prescribed specific measures as per the weekly positivity rate of COVID-19 cases in its establishments besides suggesting health education and awareness campaigns to deal with the situation.
It said the weekly positivity rate in the Army for the week ending December 31 was 2.34 per cent but added that the current rising trends necessitate re-visiting the existing measures.
The advisory said if a station records the positivity rate in the range of one to two per cent, then all its personnel returning from leave and temporary duties should undergo COVID-19 tests and that all social gatherings should be cancelled.
In such a scenario, the official meetings should be held virtually and quarantine facilities should be kept in a full state of readiness.
If the weekly positivity rate is in the range of two to five per cent, then all personnel returning from outstation leave and duties should be quarantined for seven days and tested before allowing them to leave the quarantine facilities, the advisory said.
It said teleconsultations for treatment should be resorted to if feasible besides activating quarantine facilities.
The advisory recommended that attendance in offices should be restricted if the weekly positivity rate ranges between five to 10. It said all non-essential travel of service personnel should be curtailed in such a scenario.
For stations that report a weekly positivity rate of over 10, the advisory recommended stopping physical attendance as well as all non-essential leave and temporary training.
The advisory said the military hospitals will continue to provide all Covid-related and emergency/life-saving services.
It said the hospitals should postpone “cold surgeries’ ‘ if the bed-occupancy (ICU) is 40 per cent.
The advisory also recommended ensuring “advance engagement and information campaigns” so that there is no misinformation or panic.
It said actions will be taken to reduce overcrowding in offices, personnel lines and dining halls.
Food timings in dining halls to be staggered, it added.