More squads set up to ensure physical distancing, grassroots monitoring to be revived
With the continuing rise in COVID-19 caseload in the city, the Corporation has stepped up its measures to prevent the spread of the virus.
The health wing has decided to deploy a squad consisting of health inspectors, junior health inspectors and other health workers to carry out checks in shops, institutions, public spaces and in houses or auditoriums where functions are happening, to ensure that COVID-19 protocols are being followed.
This follows an understanding that there has been some level of laxity in following the various safety protocols among the public, as the opening up of businesses and traffic has created an impression of return to normalcy. There has been no let-up in the number of cases being reported from the city.
“We have formed squads in each of the health circles. These squads are mainly carrying out checks in shops and other institutions. When we began the latest round of checks on Tuesday, we found that proper physical distancing was not being followed in many of the shops, even in some medical stores. The squads are also carrying out checks at marriage functions in homes to ensure that there are no more people than the number of guests allowed. Squads have also been formed to carry out mike announcements in all wards,” said a health wing official of the Corporation.
Ever since the responsibility regarding contact tracing was shifted from the local body health officials to the police, there has been some kind of lull in the COVID-19 prevention activities at the local body level. The attention of local bodies had shifted mostly to the running of COVID first-line treatment centres and institutional quarantine centres. Ward-level committees formed with people’s representatives and residents of each ward for efficient monitoring of those in home quarantine have also become non-functional in recent weeks.
“The focus has to go back to grassroots monitoring again. For this, the Corporation has been organising video conferences with various residents’ association representatives over the past few days to discuss the steps to be taken at the local level. This is especially important in areas where the caseload is high,” said the official.