Cluster-level containment is new strategy to quell COVID-19

Aggressive strategy will include geographic quarantine, social distancing and testing all suspected cases

Uttar Pradesh, coronavirus, COVID-19, Coronavirus outbreak, coronavirus shutdown
The Centre's decision comes at a time when COVID-19 clusters are developing in several states. Photo: PTI

The Union home ministry has come up with a cluster containment strategy, which through focus on early detection of COVID-19 cases and breaking chain of transmission aims to contain the disease in a define geographical area.

“The strategy would include geographic quarantine, social distancing measures, enhanced active surveillance, testing all suspected cases, isolation of cases, quarantine of contacts and risk communication to create awareness among public on preventive public health measures,” said a document issued by the ministry.

The ministry said the containment strategy is important when the risk of the spread of the disease remains high with at least 211 districts reporting COVID-19 cases and clusters appearing in states like Kerala, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Karnataka, Telangana and the Union territories of Delhi and Ladakh.

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As part of the strategy, an intensive risk communication campaign will be initiated to urge people to stay at home for an initial period of 28 days. It will be extended depending on the risk assessment.

“Based on the risk assessment and indication of successful containment operations, an approach of staggered work and market hours may be put into practice,” the document said.

It also says that the aggressive containment strategy will be relaxed only if no new cases are reported for at least four weeks after the last confirmed case.

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