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UP Govt orders aggressive COVID-19 testing in prisons amid rise in cases

ANI | Updated: Sep 29, 2020 15:16 IST

Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India], September 29 (ANI): The Prisons Department of the Uttar Pradesh government has asked all District Magistrates (DMs), Senior Superintendents of Police (SSPs) and Superintendents of Police (SPs) of the state to go in for aggressive COVID-19 testing and take necessary precautionary measures amid rising of cases in the prisons.
In an official statement, Anand Kumar, Indian Police Service (IPS), said that despite government guidelines on aggressive coronavirus testing to prevent further spread of the virus, there is low testing in the state prisons.
"Government guidelines clearly enunciate and predicate aggressive testing, tracing, isolating and treating strategy. Despite this, there is very low testing of the inmates in few districts. You will agree that testing is the bulwark to combat and prevent the spread of the pandemic. Asymptomatic carriers are the main reason for this. Only an aggressive testing approach can offset the spread," he said.

He added that necessary health protocols were not followed in some districts which resulted in an increase in the number of cases in the main jails.
"In some districts inmates lodged in temporary jails have been sent to the main jails without following the prescribed testing protocols. They have tested positive in the main jails defeating the very purpose of the temporary jails acting as a buffer to prevent the infection in the main jails. The net result being an increase in the number of cases in the main jails," he added.
Kumar appreciated the local administration for declaring the barracks in jails as L1 hospitals to treat asymptomatic inmates along with the deployment of medical personnel required.
"Almost 200 infected inmates each in these jails recovered within 10 days without any casualty due to proactive and consummate efforts of the local administration. Therefore if this practice is adopted in other districts, the purpose of containment will be better served. Transporting the inmates to outside hospitals may be resorted to only on need basis," he said.
According to the Union Health Ministry, the state has as many as 53,953 active coronavirus cases. While the cured/discharged/migrated cases are 3,31,270, the death toll stands at 5,652. (ANI)