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Consider lockdown as self imposed curfew: Rajasthan CM Gehlot

Rajasthan is under lockdown in the wake of the growing number of coronavirus cases in the region.

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Ashok Gehlot

Jaipur, March 23 : Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Monday appealed to the people of the state to stay indoors and follow all rules of the lockdown or else the state government shall be forced to impose curfew in the state.

Gehlot said in a twee, “I am appealing to all of you for the sake of your lives. Stay indoors and take this lockdown as curfew. This lockdown should be considered as self-imposed curfew by you or else we shall have to impose curfew in the stat.”

Rajasthan is under lockdown in the wake of the growing number of coronavirus cases in the region.

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Delhi govt orders 28 ventilators, 435 oxygen concentrators

Delhi has 19 COVID Care Centres (CCC) with 5,716-bed capacity. The state has 50,000 PPEs in stock.

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New Delhi, May 26 : Amid rising coronavirus cases, the Delhi Health Department has placed orders for 30,000 PPE kits, 3.5 lakh N-95 masks, 28 ventilators and 435 oxygen concentrators, according to a statement by the Raj Niwas, here on Tuesday.

The Secretary (Health) also presented the ‘situational analysis of Covid-19 in Delhi’ to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal.

Up to May 25, there were 14,053 confirmed cases in Delhi. Of this, 6,771 patients recovered or migrated. The case fatality rate in Delhi is 1.96 per cent against the national average of 2.57 per cent.

As on May 25, the Lt Governor was informed, 34 labs were functional for Covid-19 tests. Till date, 1,74,469 cumulative tests had been conducted with the positivity rate as on May 25 being 8.06 per cent.

Adequate supply of medical essentials has been ensured and more ventilators are being procured. At present, 4,462 beds, 429 ICUs, 343 ventilators and 2,632 oxygen supported beds are available in the Covid hospitals.

Delhi has 19 COVID Care Centres (CCC) with 5,716-bed capacity. The state has 50,000 PPEs in stock.

The Secretary also informed Baijal about augmentation of the bed capacity by 25 per cent in private hospitals with 50 plus beds, earmarking of 20 per cent beds for Covid patients in these hospitals, daily health monitoring of the home isolated Covid patients and raising isolation beds in the CCCs.

The Lt. Governor asked the Health Department to review medical infrastructure capacity building and remove bottlenecks immediately. The trend of the past 10-15 days should be analysed for future management, Baijal said and advised monitoring of containment zones on a dynamic basis for focused action.

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India to continue using HCQ as prophylaxis for COVID: ICMR

The clinical trial of the HCQ on COVID-19 patients was suspended by the World Health Organisation on Monday.

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New Delhi, May 26 : The Indian Council of Medical Research on Tuesday said it will continue using hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) medicine as prophylaxis for COVID-19 disease.

Speaking at a press conference, Dr Balram Bhargava, Director General (DG) of the ICMR, told the media that the Council found the drug very effective and having less side effects for prophylaxis consumption.

The clinical trial of the HCQ on COVID-19 patients was suspended by the World Health Organisation on Monday.

Talking about the issue and latest guidelines about HCQ in which its usage was widened, Dr Bhargava said, “COVID-19 is an evolving field. We don’t know which medicines are working and which are not. There are lots of drugs that have been repurposed for use in COVID whether prophylaxis or as treatment. HCQ is a very old anti-malarial drug that was being widely used and it continues to be widely used. It is safer.”

Bhargava said the biological plausibility of HCQ was also supporting that it is possibly an antiviral drug. “We did some invitro study in labs and found that it has antiviral properties. This drug became suddenly popular when the American government also started using it and they got-fast track approval or emergency use authorisation. We also thought that it may be a useful drug for prevention of COVID.”

The DG said taking the biological plausibility, in vitro data and safety level of the drug, the ICMR had recommended it for empiric use under strict medical supervision about one-and-a-half months ago. “We also conducted a study on it. During these 6 weeks, we got data of observational studies — case control studies and observational studies — in different cohorts in India.”

The studies were done at AIIMS, ICMR, and also in three public hospitals in Delhi. Bhargave, however, said that randomized trial of the drug was not possible. “Looking at the data of these studies, we found that it may be working and without major side effects except nausea, vomiting and palpitations occasionally as per the Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission results of all people taking HCQ are being monitored,” said Bhargava.

“It should be continued when there is no harm and some benefit may be there. We have clearly advised that it should be taken with food and not empty stomach. We also advised that we need to do one ECG during its use as prophylaxis.

“Looking at the risk benefits, we have found that our frontline workers should be given it, but they must use PPE. Very soon a study will be published on this,” said Bhargava.

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Worried about fire incident in my constituency: Harsh Vardhan

It is the second fire incident in Delhi within 12 hours. On May 25-26 night, a fire in Tughalaqabad slums destroyed around 250 shanties. No one was injured in the fire.

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Harsh Vardhan

New Delhi, May 26 : Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, who is also an MP from Chandni Chowk constituency, expressed his concern over a fire incident in a footwear company in Keshavpuram area of north-west Delhi on Tuesday.

“I am worried about the fire incident that took place in a footwear company in Keshav Puram area of my parliamentary constituency Chandni Chowk. It is very fortunate… I feel relieved that so far there has been no loss of life. The prompt response of fire fighters is commendable,” Harsh Vardhan said in a tweet.

A major fire broke out at a shoe factory in Delhi’s Keshavpuram area on Tuesday morning, following which 23 fire tenders were rushed to douse the flames, officials said. There are no reports so far of anyone being trapped in the building, officials said.

Chief Fire Officer Anuj Garg told IANS that the fire call was received at 8.34 a.m. from the shoe-manufacturing factory located on the first floor of a building in Keshavpuram in north-west Delhi.

It is the second fire incident in Delhi within 12 hours. On May 25-26 night, a fire in Tughalaqabad slums destroyed around 250 shanties. No one was injured in the fire.

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