- COVID-19 was first detected in Wuhan city of China in December 2019. Till now it has spread to more than 100 countries. More than 1,00,000 people were affected by the 2019-20 coronavirus outbreak and the death toll has crossed 4,000.
- In India, 61 people have affected by the disease as of now (11th March 2020).
- Every country is trying hard to handle the Coronavirus outbreak. India is no exception. The Indian government is taking several steps to prevent the outbreak and gearing up healthcare systems to tackle the new cases. But are we really prepared to handle a possible COVID-19 outbreak in India?
Steps taken by the Indian government:-
- The Indian government has set up coronavirus screening at airports as soon as the news of the outbreak in China came out. And people from China or who have travel history with China were banned from entering into India. In some cases, they were sent back. And Indians were stopped from going to China. If anyone has symptoms, they were quarantined and were treated in isolation. In this way, India could effectively prevent the COVID-19 for a much longer time than most of the developed countries.
- At present, India has 15 labs to test the coronavirus. The union health minister said that the number of labs will be increased to 50 if the need arises.
- Two Indian firms are in a race to develop a vaccine against COVID-19.
The present situation in India:-
- India is more vulnerable to epidemics because of its high population density, poor and unequal healthcare facilities, poor sanitation facilities in slums and rapid growing internal migration. Still many people in India do not have access to primary healthcare services. And the present number of hospitals are not in a position to handle a significantly high number of patients at a time. There is a lack of healthcare professionals in India.
Till now, the government has effectively prevented the outbreak and has quarantined the patients. But if the number of patients increases, it will be very difficult to prevent the further spread of coronavirus. Not just coronavirus but there is a possibility of other pandemics in future. So, to tackle this kind of situations, India should improve its healthcare facilities. Strengthening our healthcare systems to prepare for the worst is the need of the hour.
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