Embarking on a fight against the COVID-19 pandemic on a war footing, Assam has taken many preventive measures early to tackle potential challenges.
The state is one of those which do not have any positive case so far. Northeast India has reported just two cases so far – one each in Manipur and Mizoram.
Gearing up its preparations, the state government has converted the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) into a full-fledged coronavirus treatment hospital leaving the gynaecology, cancer and the emergency ward. On the other hand, the government has prepared the Mahendra Mohan Choudhury Hospital and Sonapur Civil Hospital for treatment of COVID-19 infected patients.
The Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on March 27th, 2020, informed that a Memorandum of Understanding was signed with 34 private hospitals who agreed to take the load of the entire patients of the GMCH. The government on March 28th, 2020, inked another MoU with private hospitals in Dibrugarh in a bid to convert the Assam Medical College COVID-19 patients.
Meanwhile, the state government also set up 700-bedded makeshift quarantine centre at Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, Guwahati.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and the Health Minister have been relentlessly reviewing the preparations of the hospitals to fight the coronavirus. The CM, while seeking the cooperation of the people to prevent the spread of the virus, repeatedly appealed the people to restrain from stepping out from home.
All the district administrations of the state have been directed by the government to make ensure availability of the essential services and the commodities. The essential services and the commodities including the healthcare services, LPG, groceries etc are exempted from the lockdown.
India is currently under complete lockdown that came into effect on March 24th, 2020, midnight for 21 days. .The coronavirus has infected a total of 931 including 48 foreign nationals and claimed 25 lives so far according to the Health Ministry. Maharashtra registered highest cases with a figure of 183 followed by Kerala (174) and Karnataka (76).