CHENNAI: The Directorate of Public Health and Preventive Medicine has issued operational guidelines as per the revised surveillance strategy with focus on early detection, isolation, testing, and timely management of suspected and confirmed cases for the detection, containment of Covid and monitoring the trends of existing variants.
The Deputy Director of Health Services (DDHS) in all districts are instructed to monitor long term epidemiologic trends through the established genomic surveillance strategy.
The long term vision is to fully integrated Covid surveillance within existing IHIP-IDSP surveillance mechanism.
All District Surveillance Officers need to have continued focus on health facility based surveillance and laboratory based surveillance. The district surveillance officer in all districts are responsible to analyze the data and 5 per cent of such ILI cases shall be referred to lab for Covid testing through RT-PCR.
In a letter to all the DDHS, DPH stated that the monitoring of all SARI cases in all district hospitals and selected tertiary hospitals & their RT-PCR testing for Covid should be done. Meanwhile, IDSP shall share fortnightly reporting data of the cases.
Apart from this, laboratories testing for Covid should upload their data on ICMR portal for regular monitoring and data should also be analyzed for test positivity rates and trend of CT values. The community-based surveillance focusing on indicator based surveillance through IDSP/ IHIP reporting of ILI and SARI cases should be done apart from screening of incoming international travellers for Covid.
For international passengers, random screening 2 percent of passengers in each incoming flight into India and subjecting all positive specimens to genomic sequencing.
A proportion of international arrivals are to tested and all positives to be sequenced at the State Public Health Laboratory apart from testing of cluster cases.