Defence Minister Rajnath Singh reviewed the functioning of the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) and their assistance to civilian authorities to contain the spread of COVID-19 at a meeting on Thursday. The meeting was attended by Defence Secretary Dr Ajay Kumar, Director General AFMS Lt Gen Anup Banerji, Director General (Organisation and Personnel) AFMS Lt General A K Hooda, Director General Medical Services (Navy) Surgeon Vice Admiral M V Singh and Director General Medical Services (Air) Air Marshal M S Butola.
The team briefed the Defence Minister about various actions taken in terms of issuing advisories to Armed Forces personnel, providing assistance to civilian authorities in respect of quarantine facilities, provisioning of hospitals and healthcare in the prevailing situation.
"On a request received from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, quarantine facilities for civilians were created and are currently functional at six stations for civilian evacuees from Italy, Iran, China, Malaysia and Japan," said a Defence Ministry release. "Standby quarantine facilities have also been created at other stations. Starting 1st Feb 2020 these facilities have housed 1,738 individuals."
While appreciating various measures initiated by the Armed Forces Medical Services, the Defence Minister also directed them to extend all possible assistance to civil authorities to overcome the challenges posed by COVID-19.
The Indian Army has prepared a set of instructions for personnel rejoining from leave/temporary duty/courses to ensure any potential spread of the disease is contained among forces. All personnel in the Army will be classified as Green (who have completed 14 days quarantine period), Yellow (who need to undergo 14 days quarantine period) and Red (Symptomatic requiring isolation and further treatment in COVID hospital), the Army has said.
Broad modalities/guidelines for rejoining have been planned in a phased manner considering the number of individuals rejoining from leave/temporary duty/courses and the requirement for smooth reporting, quarantine and onward dispersal to units, the Army said on Monday.