Andhra goes for three-pronged strategy to check Covid

The Andhra Pradesh government is set to adopt a three-pronged strategy to check the spread of coronavirus in the state.

According to a media statement issued by the state government following a review meeting on Monday to discuss the prevailing Covid situation, orders have been issued to adopt a three-pronged strategy to ensure better treatment, oxygen, quality food, medicine, water and sanitation facilities in the Covid hospitals, allotment of beds to Covid patients and to check the services of the Covid call centre.

The three pronged strategy, which will work from the districts to the state level, will ensure that no private hospital charges more than the prescribed rate, and also monitoring of the medical services in the hospitals.

The district collectors will divide all the hospitals treating Covid patients into clusters with 5 to 8 hospitals in each cluster. The DCs will appoint a district-level officer in-charge of each cluster. The officer, who will visit the hospitals frequently, will ensure that no private hospital charges more than the prescribed rates.

Wherever a complaint is received, the officer will respond quickly and take necessary action. In the same way, the officer will look into the hospitals treating Covid patients without permission within the cluster.

The district collector will set up a flying squad at the district level to check private hospitals from over-charging. The flying squad will comprise an officer from the Drug Control Division, one from the Vigilance Enforcement Division and another from the Medical Health Department.

The squad will also assist to help the cluster in-charges work more efficiently.

A special task force committee with senior officers at the state level has been set up to review the performance of the clusters and flying squads in the districts from time to time.

The chairperson of the State Covid Command Control Centre, K.S. Jawahar Reddy, Vigilance Enforcement Director General K.V. Rajendranath Reddy, Principal Secretary (Health) Anil Kumar Singhal, Health Commissioner Katamaneni Bhaskar, and Medicine Regulatory Department Director General Ravi Shankar are members of the special task force committee that will be headed by Special Chief Secretary (Higher Education), Satish Chandra.

The state government has given the responsibility of all activities related to Covid to the joint collectors in the districts, transferring their existing duties to others.

The joint collectors will be responsible for ensuring good sanitation facilities, quality food supply, availability of doctors and paramedical staff, setting up of help desks etc.

They would monitor the performance of the ‘Arogya Mitras’ through CCTV cameras. They would also coordinate with the Covid call centre and ensure that all works are completed on time. Along with these, the JCs will also be responsible for data updation and management of hospitals.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has called for increasing the number of Covid tests and ensure that the results come within 24 hours of testing.

Orders were issued to cap CT scan fee at Rs 3,000 and RT-PCR test at Rs 499 and to set up oxygen production plants and ensure continuous supply of electricity to the hospitals.

A notification will be issued for recruiting 1,170 specialist doctors, 1,170 general duty medical officers, 2,000 staff nurses, 306 anesthesia technicians, 330 FNOs, 300 MNOs and as 300 sweepers.

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