Harsh Vardhan attends Health Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting

Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on Friday participated in a meeting of the Health Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organization member states through video conferencing and said that India undertook the COVID-19 challenge with the highest level of political commitment.

He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi personally monitored the situation and ensured a preemptive, proactive, and graded response to tackle the crisis.

“We, in India, undertook the COVID-19 challenge with the highest level of political commitment. PM Modi personally monitored the situation and ensured preemptive, proactive, and graded responses, leaving no stones unturned to contain the deadly virus from spreading,” the Health Minister said at the meeting held to discuss best practices in countering COVID-19 spread.

He also said that India has one of the lowest cases and deaths per million population, which is 864 cases per million and less than 21 deaths per million of population. India has so far reported, 1.25 million cases and more than 30 thousand deaths due to COVID-19.

“Our recovery rate stands at 63.45 per cent, whereas our mortality is amongst the lowest in the world at 2.3 per cent. India started its preparedness measures much before the outbreak was even declared a public health emergency of international concern by the WHO,” he said.

“A series of actions were initiated in a graded way, including issuing travel advisories, point-of-entry surveillance, community-based surveillance, enhancement of laboratory and hospital capacity while dissemination of technical guidelines on managing different aspects of disease outbreaks and communicating risk to the public,” he added.

The minister also said that the country has performed over 15 million RT-PCR tests so far, and is now performing more than 0.35 million tests per day with a projected quantum of performing 1 million tests per day.

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