Mantra of the Greater Chennai Corporation: test, isolate, treat. Repeat | Chennai News

With the number of new cases rapidly increasing in the city, the civic body has adopted a five-pronged testing strategy to identify symptomatic patients for early diagnosis and treatment. The company will randomly test people to monitor the increase in the number of cases.

On top of that, the company has asked health officials in the area to file police complaints against the home quarantine violators.
Company commissioner Gagandeep Singh Bedi told TOI that the five-pronged strategy includes randomized and targeted testing. “Teams, led by regional deputy commissioners, have been formed to randomly sample sellers and buyers in the market. Second, testing of inmates in homes and educational institutions is done on cars,” he said. he said, while admitting that the strategy was motivated by the fact that some students turned out to be positive.
Instructions for targeted testing of all inpatient attendants in public and private hospitals have also been published. “Random samples are taken from bus stations and places of travel,” he added.
Shortly after the arrival of the test results, the patient will be diagnosed at the screening centers and guided if he can be isolated at home or admitted to one of the health centers.
In addition to this, the regional deputy commissioners have been asked to identify the localities where tests targeting the vulnerable and unvaccinated population are being carried out.
While the civic body performs more than 20,000 tests a day, experts say with the Omicron variant spreading faster, RTPCR tests may not be too effective.
“During this time, the government needs to think about focusing on antigen testing. By the time the contracts are drawn, the samples are taken and the RTPCR results are expected, there is already a huge backlog. may have infected more people, ”said infectious disease specialist Dr Subramanian Swaminathan.
Just last week, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan wrote to the chief secretary of all states, urging them to use rapid antigen tests. As cases increase rapidly, a slow turnaround time for RTPCR tests results in a delay in diagnosis.
Dr Swaminathan said once cases cross the threshold, contact tracing won’t matter as the infection has already spread.
In an internal meeting held at Ripon Buildings on Wednesday, area health officials said that due to a delay in informing private labs about RTPCR testing, they were unable to monitor isolation at home. “When we called a patient who had an RTPCR test, he was traveling on a train,” said an area health official. The city health worker said that in such cases, strict police action should be taken.
At the morning zone officer meeting, the company commissioner asked FOCUS volunteers to regularly visit the homes of patients who are in home quarantine to check for symptoms. He also instructed the tele-counseling team to call the patients twice a day and let him know.


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