Home/ News / India/  COVID-19 mock drills to be held in India on 10-11 April

Amid the sudden surge of new Covid cases, the union home ministry on Saturday informed that countrywide mock drills will be held on April 10-11. 

Informing about the same, Rajesh Bhushan, Secretary, Department of Health & FW Ministry, notified in a statement, there has been a gradual increase in COVID-19 cases in India since mid-February 2023, with most cases reported in a few states. The rates of hospitalization and death remain low due to significant COVID-19 vaccination coverage, but public health actions need to be reinvigorated to contain the surge. 

He further advised the states to must monitor evolving etiologies of influenza-like illness and severe acute respiratory illness. Influenza A (H1N1) and A (H3N2) are the most prominent subtypes currently circulating. Both COVID-19 and influenza are easily preventable by following simple public health measures, and the Ministry of Health has issued guidelines for co-infection management.

Read the advisory here: 

This is in continuation of Union Health Ministry's earlier communication dated 10 March, 2023 & D.O letter of even number dated 16 March, 2023 on the issue of seasonal circulation of pan-respiratory pathogens in the country as well as public health response to Covid-19 in the States/UTS.

A gradual but sustained increase in trajectory of COVID-19 cases in the country is being witnessed since mid-February 2023. As on date, most of the active COVID-19 cases in the country are largely being reported by a few States like Kerala (26.4%), Maharashtra (21.7%), Gujarat (13.9%), Karnataka (8.6% ) and Tamil Nadu (6.3%). While the rates of hospitalization and death due to the disease remains low, largely because of the significant coverage achieved in terms of COVID-19 vaccination rates by all States/UTs, this gradual rise in cases needs reinvigorated public health actions to contain the surge.

States/UTs must keep a close watch on the evolving etiologies (causes of diseases) of Influenza Like Illness (ILI) & Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) cases. India usually sees a seasonal rise in Influenza cases from January to March & again from August to October. Presently, the most prominent subtypes of Influenza in circulation in the Country seem to be Influenza A (H1N1) and Influenza A (H3N2).

 As you may be aware, COVID-19 and Influenza share a number of similarities in terms of mode of transmission, high risk population, clinical signs and symptoms. While this may present a clinical dilemma for the attending doctors in terms of diagnosis, this also renders both these diseases easily preventable by following simple public health measures like avoiding overcrowded and poorly ventilated settings, using handkerchief/tissue while sneezing or coughing, wearing a mask in crowded & closed settings, maintaining hand hygiene, avoiding spitting in public places etc.

Union Ministry of Health has already issued detailed 'Guidelines for management of co-infection of COVID-19 with other seasonal epidemic prone diseases', which provides detailed guidance in terms of diagnostic modalities to be utilized as well as case management approach for the same.

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Updated: 25 Mar 2023, 04:21 PM IST
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