Conducting mock drill to handle virus cases
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Mumbai: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has released standard orating procedure (SOP) to prepare themselves to conduct mock drill on March 22 for emergency response for handling COVID-19 cases in government hospitals in the country. The hospitals will have to use the appropriate pers­onal protective equipment (PPE) and frequent hand hygiene and respiratory hygiene should always be performed. PPE should be disc­a­rded in an appropriate waste container after use, and hand hyg­i­ene should be performed before putting on and after taking off PPE. Proposed mock drill coincides with PM call for Janata Curfew.

The number of visitors should be restricted.If visitors want to enter a patient’s room, they should be clearly instructed about how to put on and remove PPE and about performing hand hygiene before putting on and after removing PPE. However, the ministry wants it should be supervised by a healthcare worker. All rapid response staffers must be trained in hand hygiene and how to put on and remove PPE to avoid self contamination. During lab investigations, all kits for collection of respiratory samples should be available. All the investigations of COVID-19 suspects should be restricted to a bare minimum as deemed appro­pr­iate by the treating physician till such time as the confirmatory tests are made available. If confirmed, bio safety precautions must be taken if any invasive investigations are done.

According to the ministry SOP, doctors, nurses, technicians should undergo knowledge assessment along with skill assessment and if needed the requisite training would be provided to fill the gaps. The government hospitals would have to engage the public health specialist to advise about the reduction of infection in the medical care facility. They will also supervise the handing over of discharged patients to state surveillance teams for monitoring and tracking these patients till the requisite period is over. They will also supervise proper biomedical waste disposal of the healthcare facility.

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