The National Technical Advisory Committee on Covid-19 yesterday issued a guideline asking hospitals and healthcare centers to reintroduce provision for wearing masks amid emergence of a new corona sub-variant that by now claimed five lives in neighboring India.
“In several countries of the world the new JN 1 variety has spread. In our country the COVID-19 infec-tion is under control and that variety is not been detected,” a NTAC statement signed by its chairman Professor Dr Mohammad Shahidullah said.
But, it said, as part of precautionary measures the committee suggests people with lesser immunity and steps for its use in high risk places like hospitals and healthcare centers along with related protective measures.
The NTAC statement came as India’s Integrated Disease Surveillance Program (IDSP) under the Nation-al Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) yesterday reported five deaths due to Covid in the last 24 hours in the neighboring country.
According to the health watchdog Kerala saw two deaths, while Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Punjab re-ported one death each.
The NTAC made the recommendations at its 65th meeting which discussed in detail on the latest situa-tion of the COVID-19, the new corona sub-variant JN-1 and the recent advises issued by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The national Committee asked the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) to review the global corona report and also to enforce surveillance in the country.
The committee also called for quick reorganization of viral diagnosis systems and keeping ready the ICU facilities for treating infected patients.
The UN World Health Organization (WHO) on May 5, 2023 had declared “with great hope” an end to COVID-19 as a public health emergency, stressing that it does not mean the disease is no longer a global threat.