COVID19: Mass screening in SMC wards starts today

The District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), Srinagar, is starting second phase of mass testing from Thursday, to screen more than 60,000 people in municipal wards of the city.

The first phase of mass testing with focus on markets and government offices culminated today with 32,000 tests conducted in 12 days.

The Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) has deployed Ward Officers in 74 wards to facilitate DDMA and health authorities for phase-II of the drive.

The drive to conduct Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) was launched on September 3 with special focus on markets, works places and government and private offices. Teams of health department aided by staff from various departments including Education and ICDS were deputed for the programme. Tehsildars coordinated with market associations, office establishments and various organisations with active involvement of police and municipal officials, for making arrangements. Zonal teams were headed by respective Medical Officers.

During the special drive which covered 139 locations including markets, work places and offices, more than 32,000 RAT were conducted of which 2,116 persons tested positive, including more than 310 at work places and offices. The special drives are aimed at early detection of cases and timely measures for isolation or treatment, depending upon the severity of case.

Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, who is also Chairman DDMA, informed that during last 15 days 49,334 tests have been conducted in various zones, and contact pools apart from markets, work places and offices, including 32,000 tests under special drive at identified areas.

Additionally, health department previously conducted 36,966 RTPCR tests in various health zones of Srinagar apart from testing 47,027 air travellers on arrival at Srinagar. He commended the role played by the sampling teams and technical staff of SKIMS and GMC for all out efforts in ensuring maximum possible testing.

The Chairman DDMA appealed the public to cooperate with field officers deployed by SMC for phase-II of the drive with focussed testing in Municipal Wards.

Tehsildars and SHOs will continue to facilitate the arrangements for sampling in respective areas and providing required assistance to sampling teams. He also appealed to civil society organisations, religious institutions and NGOs to mobilise people in respective areas for ensuring maximum sampling/testing for COVID19 as per schedule notified, which was aimed at containing the spread of COVID19. The DC further appealed the Municipal Councilors, BDC Chairpersons and Sarpanchs and Panchs for their active role in mobilising public for ensuring maximum sampling in their respective constituencies.

The drive is being organised in addition to the regular sampling done by zonal teams in respective medical blocks and institutional sampling at respective hospitals.