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COVID-19 Pandemic is Only Speeding Up and Not Even Close to Being Over: WHO

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Coronavirus speeding up who

Shimla: It’s been six months since the first reports of a cluster of cases of pneumonia of unknown cause in China appeared and then threw the entire world into turmoil. However, the pandemic is not slowing down; instead, it’s speeding up, the World Health Organization said on June 29, 2020, in an official statement.

The six-month anniversary of the outbreak coincides with reaching 10 million cases and 500,000 deaths.

Many countries have implemented unprecedented measures to suppress transmission and save lives, WHO said. Although many countries have made some progress, globally the pandemic is actually speeding up.

WHO said that the critical question that all countries will face in the coming months is how to live with this virus. That is the new normal. 

Many countries have implemented unprecedented measures to suppress transmission and save lives, it said.

These measures have been successful in slowing the spread of the virus. But they have not completely stopped it, the WHO said.

Some countries are now experiencing a resurgence of cases as they start to re-open their economies and societies. Most people remain susceptible. The virus still has a lot of room to move, WHO said.

“The hard reality is: this is not even close to being over. Although many countries have made some progress, globally the pandemic is actually speeding up, “

the WHO said.  

“We will need even greater stores of resilience, patience, humility and generosity in the months ahead,”

the Organization added.

But we have also seen concerning signs of stigma, misinformation and the politicization of the pandemic. 

The Organization said that although a vaccine will be an important long-term tool for controlling COVID-19, there are five priorities that every single country must focus on now, to save lives now.

1.Empower Communities

Every individual must understand that they are not helpless – there are things everyone should do to protect themselves and others. Your health is in your hands.

That includes physical distancing, hand hygiene, covering coughs, staying home if you feel sick, wearing masks when appropriate, and only sharing information from reliable sources.

Some people may be in a low-risk category, but the choices you make could be the difference between life and death for someone else. 

2.Suppress Transmission

Whether countries have no cases, clusters of cases or community transmission, there are steps all countries can take to suppress the spread of the virus. Ensure that health workers have access to training and personal protective equipment, the WHO said.

3. Improve Surveillance to Find Cases

The single most important intervention for breaking chains of transmission is not necessarily high-tech and can be carried out by a broad range of professionals. It’s tracing and quarantining contacts. Many countries actually have used non-health professionals to do contact tracing, it said.

4. Save Lives

The third measure is early identification and clinical care to save lives like providing oxygen and dexamethasone to people with severe and critical disease saves lives.

Special attention would have to be given to high-risk groups, including elderly people in long-term care facilities.

“Japan has done this: it has one of the highest populations of elderly people, but its death rate is low, and the reason is what we just said – many countries can do that, they can save lives,”

WHO said.

5. Accelerate Research

The WHO said that it had already learned a lot about this virus, but there’s still a lot we don’t know and there are still tools that it needs.

Political Leadership.

The WHO said that national unity and global solidarity are essential to implementing a comprehensive strategy to suppress transmission, save lives and minimize the social and economic impact of the virus. 

No matter what stage a country is at, these five priorities – if acted on consistently and coherently – can turn the tide, the WHO said.

 

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After Booking About 200 Women in Spiti, CM Now Urges Rural Women to be Vigilant About Quarantine Violations

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Tribal woman in kinnaur arrested

Shimla-On the one hand, Himachal Pradesh Government is allegedly harassing nearly 200 tribal women of Spiti for being vigilant and denying entry to the large convey of Cabinet Minister Ram Lal Markanda early in June for not following the rules regarding quarantine, but on the other hand Chief Minister Jairam Thakur is urging the womenfolk to keep a strict vigil on the people coming home from other States, who have been kept in-home quarantine.

Also Read: Haughty Minister Allegedly Heckling Tribal Women Who Dared to Deny Him Entry in District Over Quarantine Violation

He urged them to help to monitor such people so that they don’t jump home quarantine. He said that this would help in checking the spread of this virus at the community level. He was reportedly interacting with rural women who are beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Ujjawala Yojna on Monday.

The Chief Minister also made a big claim that Himachal Pradesh has become the first state in the country where cent percent households have LPG gas connections.

Thakur made a claim that there is no more collecting fuel wood and cooking food on traditional chullah in the State. Now, rural women do not have to go out for collecting fuel wood, Additional Chief Secretary Manoj Kumar added to the CM’s claim.

The CM claimed that Under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjawala Yojna, gas connections were provided free of cost to 1.36 lakh families of the State. 

Under State Government’s Himachal Grihini Suvidha Yojna, 2,76,243 families were provided free gas connections in the State.                               

 

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HIMCARE: Last Date for Registration/Renewal Extended

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Himachal Pradesh Himcare Registration and Renewal

Shimla: The last date for renewal of HIMCARE card has been extended till 15th July 2020, the Additional Chief Secretary Health R.D. Dhiman had informed recently. Under this scheme, free health treatment is provided upto rupees five lakh. 

 He said that new eligible families can also register upto 15th July 2020. Besides this, those families can also renew their cards on completion of a time period of 365 days. The beneficiaries can visit the website for registration and renewal or can visit the nearest Lok Mitra centre.

It is mandatory to upload the required documents for registration and renewal of card and the list of required documents was available on the website.

ACS said that those families whose card has expired on 30th June 2020, didn’t renew their card till 15th July 2020, then they would have to wait till January and would not be able to avail the benefit of free health treatment.

Tourism Activities in Himachal to Increase, Stay Alert: ACS Dhiman

Further, on Monday, Dhiman said the economic and tourism activities would be increasing in the State, therefore, it was important to stay alert of this virus for self-safety and safety of the society.

This statement regarding safety from coronavirus is contrary to the decisions of the state government to open tourism activity amid a spurt in COVID-19 cases.

The State Government is facing a backlash from every sphere of society for opening borders for all, especially tourists, without the need of e-pass or permission from the authorities. This decision is more likely to fuel the COVID-19 outbreak in the State.

At the same time, Dhiman is asking the people not to get afraid of coronavirus and to follow the guidelines issued by the Government, maintain self-hygiene, keeping a physical distance of one meter or three feet from another person, to avoid crowding at one place, cover the mouth with a mask or face cover and do not touch the nose, eyes and mouth.

He also asked the people to avoid such wards in the hospital where patients of coronavirus were being treated. In case a person was suffering from fever, cough, cold or having difficulty in breathing, the person should immediately contact helpline number 104 or avail services of e-sanjeevani OPD.

He also asked the people to avoid such wards in the hospital where patients of coronavirus were being treated. In case a person was suffering from fever, cough, cold or having difficulty in breathing, the person should immediately contact helpline number 104 or avail services of e-sanjeevani OPD.

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Himachal: Tourists from Neighboring States Line Up at Borders, Residents Allege Discrimination in Quarantine Rules  

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Himachal Pradesh - tourist start coming

Shimla: With the decision of Jairam Thakur-led State Government to allow tourist activity and to allow people from other states to enter Himachal Pradesh without obtaining e-pass or permission from district authorities, a beeline of vehicles was seen at the Parwanoo inter-state barrier on Sunday. This led to a traffic jam as over 1700 vehicles including both residents and tourists lined up at the barrier.

A large number of them were sent back from the barrier as they lacked required COVID-19 negative report or had not registered on the e-pass portal.

However, several tourists were allowed to enter the state after verifying their documents and COVID-19 reports, the authorities said.

According to a media report, some tourists reached Kasauli and Barog – popular spots for weekend tourism. They reportedly returned after spending a few hours. Contrary to this, the mandatory condition for tourist entry says that visitors would have to make a booking of a minimum of five days.

Similarly, visitors and returnees had reached other boarders like in Swarghat and Mehatpur. 

Also Read: All SOPs for Hotels, Restaurants, Home-Stays and Others Involved in Tourism Industry

Another issue that the authorities would face is verifying that all tourists who had entered the State returned. Tourist would have to furnish a COVID-19 negative report not older than 72 hours, register on the online portal, and make an advance booking of a minimum of five days. The SOPs have not defined as to how to verify that every single tourists have existed the state after the expiry of the mentioned duration.

Further, residents of the State are questioning the government over discrimination in quarantine rules. While tourist can enter the state and roam around for a few days without being quarantined, the residents would have to follow institutional and home-quarantine strictly even if they have a COVID-19 negative report.

Also Read: Tourist Activity Allowed, Read New Rules for Entering State, Quarantine, Plying of Public Transport

It’s pertinent to mention that the Government is already facing a backlash over its decision to open the State borders for tourists at a time when the State is witnessing a surge in COVID-19 cases. The hoteliers were also not in favour of opening the State for tourists. The residents are feeling insecure following this decision as they fear it would lead to a bigger coronavirus outbreak. With appearance of 17 new cases yesterday, the the COVID-19 tally for the State had reached 1064. 

Considering the beeline of tourist vehicles merely after 48 hours of the announcement to allow tourism activity, it is clear that tourists are likely to flood the state in the coming days. Monsoon would be the only deterrent currently. What’s concerning is that hospitality industry did not get any time to train staff or arrange all facilities mentioned in the SOPs issued by the State Government. 

The public and hoteliers are of the opinion that this decision was taken in a haste without any consideration for consequences. On the other hand the State Government claims that it had asked the Centre to allow it manage the influx of visitors/returnees in accordance with the current situation. This request, Government said, was declined by the Centre. The Government believes that opening Himachal for tourists would bring relief to those employed in the hospitality industry. 

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