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COVID-19 hotspots in country have increased due to 'lack of people's support': Health Ministry


Press Trust of India New Delhi
With over 1,200 COVID-19 cases reported in the country so far, the number of hotspots of the disease have increased, the Health Ministry said on Monday while underlining that it is implementing rigorous contact tracing and cluster containment strategies.
Addressing the daily press conference to provide updates on the COVID-19 situation in the country, Joint Secretary in Health Ministry Lav Agarwal said 227 cases have been reported in the last 24 hours and he attributed the increase to "lack of people's support and delay in timely detection" of the cases.
He further said wherever even a single case of COVID-19 is reported it is as good as a hotspot for the government.
"With over 1,200 cases of COVID-19, the number of hotspots in the country has increased. The government is using cluster containment strategies and doing rigorous contact tracing in these hotspots to check the virus from further spreading," Agarwal said.
Underlying that the government will further increase the availability of protective gear for medical professionals, he said the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has identified suppliers in South Korea, Turkey and Vietnam to improve logistics in the country during the COVID-19 crisis.
Cases of medical professionals getting infected with COVID-19 are not due to any negligence, he said.
The official further said a group of Union ministers Tuesday took stock of the situation and stressed on the need for readying dedicated COVID-19 hospitals.
Seeking cooperation from the public to fight the pandemic, Agarwal said there was no need to panic. He also said not everyone needs to wear masks and that following social distancing is more important to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Speaking at the same conference, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said so far 42,788 samples have been tested for coronavirus out of which 4,346 samples were tested on Monday.
The ICMR is working with the Department of Bio Technology and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on the agenda of developing a vaccine for the COVID-19 disease, an ICMR official said.

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First Published: Mar 31 2020 | 5:38 PM IST

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