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Coronavirus: Latest Updates And India’s Role In Curbing It!

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

It is finally time for India to become anxious about coronavirus. Until now, we were simply following the progress of this virus through media channels like the news and social media as it spread from Wuhan city of China to almost 162 countries in the world.The people who had initially been screened for coronavirus in India tested negative and India breathed a sigh of relief. But now, within just a few days, the number of confirmed cases has climbed to 153 in India! So, what is the coronavirus scene like in India and globally?

Table of contents:

Latest updates on Coronavirus

  • The number of people afflicted by coronavirus is escalating by the day. As we speak, the number stands at 186,865 globally.
  • 7,471 people have lost their lives to coronavirus from across the world. 3226 of the deceased are from China.
  • The second most affected country is Italy with 27,980 confirmed cases of coronavirus.
  • The second-highest fatality rate has been witnessed by Italy where the death toll stands at 2158.
  • The USA has promised $8.3 billion in aid to help the world contain the coronavirus epidemic.
  • Researchers are racing against time to develop a drug that can prevent or kill the coronavirus. They have identified a special protein in the human body that allows the virus to enter the cells of the lung and they are using this breakthrough to formulate a medicine.
  • Italy is under complete lockdown, with Italians being urged to stay at home and all public gatherings are being banned.

Updates from India

  • By 2nd March, 5 cases of coronavirus were reported in India.
  • By 6th March, the number had jumped sharply. As of this moment, 30 people in India have tested positive for coronavirus.
  • More than 2000 Indians are stranded in Tehran, Iran. Since Iran is in the grips of coronavirus, the Indians who have been living there may have contracted it as well. That is why India has sent 4 scientists from the Indian Council of Medical Research who will screen the Indians in Tehran before they board a flight that will bring them back to India.
  • On 6th March, special flight services will operate between New Delhi and Tehran to evacuate the stranded Indians. And 1 empty flight will also be reaching New Delhi from Tehran, which will be boarded by Iranian nationals who are currently in India.
  • 153 people in India have tested positive for coronavirus.
  • The demand for alcohol-based hand sanitisers has shot up 10 times.
  • The FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Association of India) has announced that all food items coming in from abroad, even from countries dealing with coronavirus outbreak, are completely safe for consumption. The advisory also stated that people should refrain from consuming uncooked or undercooked meat.
  • It is estimated (by the UN) that India will suffer losses worth $348 million due to disruptions in trade caused by the coronavirus.
  •   Maharashtra has reported 39 cases so far, the highest in India.

What is India doing to curb Coronavirus?

India (both the centre and the states) has sprung into action and is implementing every measure possible to contain the spread of coronavirus. Let us take a look at the measures –
  1. Isolation wards to treat coronavirus patients have been set up in government hospitals and several private hospitals.
  2.   12 sets of coronavirus helplines have been established for 12 regions of the country. The calls are being answered promptly.
  3. Outposts along the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Tibet borders have been equipped with screening devices.
  4. All flyers entering India from any nation will be screened. The screening will no longer apply to only those passengers coming in from coronavirus affected nations. Passengers travelling to India from Italy or South Korea will have to present a medical certificate from March 10th.
  5. India has cancelled the e-visas of Japanese nationals.
  6. 82 sample-testing facilities exist in India currently.
  7. Extensive screening is being carried out at 21 airports, 12 major seaports and 65 smaller seaports.
  8. The government of Sikkim will not be issuing the Inner Line Permit until further notice. No foreigners are being allowed into the state and Nathula Permit too has been suspended.
  9. India will not be sending its archery team to the Asia Cup, to be hosted by Bangkok for fears of exposure to coronavirus.
  10.   India has declared a complete travel ban to 4 countries- China, Italy, Iran and South Korea.
  11. West Bengal has quarantined 1200 people who entered the state from other countries.
  12. Every state has set up a rapid response team at the village block and district levels.
  13. India is urging people to abstain from attending mass gatherings.

How prepared are we?

Going by the robust checks and precautions implemented by India, it would seem we are all geared up to curb coronavirus. But population density, unsanitary living conditions, low levels of awareness, a paucity of hospital beds and medical professionals, prevalence of coronavirus myths as well as the absence of an efficient infrastructure are problems that need to be resolved quickly so that we can deal with the threat more effectively.

Precautions you need to adopt to be safe

Prevention is always better than cure. Here are a few preventive measures that can save you from coronavirus.
  1. Coronavirus spreads from infected people through their coughs and sneezes. Maintain 3 feet of distance between yourself and a person who appears sick.
  2. Wash your hands with soap and water or hand sanitisers repeatedly especially when you are away from home.
  3. Sneeze into the bend of your elbows.
  4. Avoid touching people.

Where can you get screened for Coronavirus?

Here are the laboratories recommended by the Union Health Minister where you can get screened for coronavirus.  
NameAddressContact Number
KGMU (King George’s Medical University)Shah Mina Rd, Chowk, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh0522 225 7540
IGGMCH (Indira Gandhi Government Medical College & Hospital)C.A. Road, Nagpur0712 272 5423
AIIMSSri Aurobindo Marg, Ansari Nagar, Ansari Nagar East, New Delhi011 2658 8500
SMS (Sawai Man Singh Medical College)Jawahar Lal Nehru Marg, Ashok Nagar, Jaipur, Rajasthan0141 270 8836
Kasturba Medical College17, Khandubhai Desai Road, Near Rasraj Hotel, Vile Parle (west), near ACME Ghar, Mumbai, Maharashtra0820 292 2367
National Institute of Virology20-A, P B No 11, Dr Ambedkar Road, Pune020 2612 7301
ICMR (Indian Council for Medical ResearchII Floor of Nirmal Bhawan, ICMR Complex, Poojanhalli Road, Off NH-7, Adjacent to Trumpet Flyover of BIAL Kannamangala, Bangalore  
Bangalore Medical College and Research InstituteFort, K.R. Road, Bangalore  
National Institute of Virology Field UnitJaya Nagar 1st Block, Jayanagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka  
KIPMR (King Institute of Preventive Medicine & Research)Guindy, Chennai, Tamil Nadu044 2250 1520
Gandhi Medical CollegeMusheerabad, Secunderabad040-27502742
Guwahati Medical CollegeNarakasur Hilltop, Bhangagarh, Guwahati, Assam0361 213 4538
National Institute of Virology Field UnitVandanam, Kerala  
BJMC (Byramjee Jeejeebhoy Medical college)B j medical college, Asarwa, Gujarat  

FAQs on Coronavirus

Should I get tested for COVID-19?

You should get tested for coronavirus infection if, in the 14 days before the start of your symptoms, you were either:
  • In close contact with a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19 infection
  •   Travelled to an area where there is ongoing community transmission of COVID-19
  • Worked in or attended a healthcare facility where patients with COVID-19 infections were being treated
In these cases, you should contact your doctor for advice.

What is the mode of transmission of coronavirus? How (easily) does it spread?

  • The virus seems to be transmitted mainly via respiratory droplets after people sneeze, cough or exhale. There is currently not enough epidemiological information to determine how easily and sustainably this virus spreads between people.

Are some people more at risk than others?

  • Generally, elderly people and those with underlying health conditions (e.g. hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease and cancer) are considered to be more at risk of developing severe symptoms.

Are children also at risk of infection?

  • Disease in children appears to be relatively rare and mild. A study from China suggested that just over 2% of cases were under 18 years of age. Of these, fewer than 3% developed severe or critical diseases.  

Where do coronaviruses come from?

  • A wide range of animals is known to be the source of coronaviruses.
  • The animal source of the latest outbreak has not yet been identified, but the original host is thought to be bats.
Determine Your Risk Of COVID-19 With PharmEasy's AI-Powered Bot! - PharmEasyAssess Your Risk of COVID-19 with Coronavirus Risk Assessment Tool  The coronavirus threat is looming large. Every one of us should abide by the health advisories to combat coronavirus and keep our loved ones and ourselves safe and healthy.Also Read: CRP Test Range for COVID-19: Understanding Results and ImplicationsDisclaimer: The information provided here is for educational/awareness purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional and should not be relied upon to diagnose or treat any medical condition. The reader should consult a registered medical practitioner to determine the appropriateness of the information and before consuming any medication. PharmEasy does not provide any guarantee or warranty (express or implied) regarding the accuracy, adequacy, completeness, legality, reliability or usefulness of the information; and disclaims any liability arising thereof.Links and product recommendations in the information provided here are advertisements of third-party products available on the website. PharmEasy does not make any representation on the accuracy or suitability of such products/services. Advertisements do not influence the editorial decisions or content. The information in this blog is subject to change without notice. The authors and administrators reserve the right to modify, add, or remove content without notification. It is your responsibility to review this disclaimer regularly for any changes.


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