Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday asked the directors of the Department of Biotechnology, its 18 autonomous bodies and PSUs to speed up the activities in developing the vaccine for COVID-19, said Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Health Ministry.
The Health Minister also asked them to fast-track the development of antibody detection kits, RT-PCR detection kits, and the COVID-19 vaccine, under the Government’s Make in India programme.
"Union Health Minister held a video-conferencing meeting with Directors of Department of Biotechnology, its 18 autonomous bodies, and PSUs and asked them fast-track development of antibody detection kits, RT-PCR detection kits and COVID-19 vaccine, under Make in India. The meeting was called to review the researches," said Agarwal during the daily press briefing.
The Joint Secretary said that Union Health Minister also held a meeting with Delhi LG, Delhi health Minister, DCPs, DMs to review the COVID-19 surveillance activities in the national capital.
The Health Ministry has advised people having mild symptoms or undergoing the pre-symptomatic phase of COVID-19, to observe home isolation.
"Such patients with requisite self-isolation facility at their residence will now have the option for home isolation. As per the eligibility for home isolation, the person should be clinically assigned as a very mild case/pre-symptomatic case by the treating medical officer," he said.
Speaking of the threat to health professionals treating COVID-19 patients, Agarwal said, through online training, the Health Ministry is trying to make health professionals aware of the need to follow safety guidelines. “If a health professional does not adhere to safety measures, he can be infected with the coronavirus. We are asking them to take required health precautions,” he added.
A total of 1,543 new COVID-19 cases have been identified in the last 24 hours, taking the tally in the country to 29,435. As many as 6,869 people have been cured of coronavirus and the recovery rate in India stands as 23.3 per cent, the Ministry said.
(With inputs from ANI)