NEW DELHI: The ministry of health and family welfar have issued a set of guidelines for states and Union territories on social distancing which they could adopt in addition to the pharmaceutical prevention interventions currently being implemented.
In the advisory, the ministry said that these guidelines should remain in place at least till March 31. “They will be reviewed as per the evolving situation,” the advisory stated.
Here is a look at the various guildelines issues by the ministry in its advisory —
- Closure of all educational establishments (schools, universities etc), gyms, museums, cultural and social centres, swimming pools and theatres. Students should be advised to stay at home. Online education to be promoted.
- Possibility of postponing exams may be explored. Ongoing exams to be conducted only after ensuring physical distance of one meter amongst students.
Social distancing is a non-pharmaceutical infection prevention and control interventionimplemented to avoid/decrease contact between those who are infected with a disease causing pathogen and those who are not, so as to stop or slow down the rate and extentof disease transmission in a community. This eventually leads to decrease inspread,morbidityand mortality due to the disease.
Ministry of health and family welfare
- Encourage private sector organizations/employers to allow employees to work from home wherever feasible.
- Meetings,as far as feasible,shall be done through video conferences. Minimize or reschedule meetings involving large number of people unless necessary.
- Restaurants to ensure handwashing protocol and proper cleanliness of frequently touched surfaces. Ensure physical distancing (minimum 1metre) between tables; encourage open air seating where practical with adequate distancing.
- Keep already planned weddings to a limited gathering, postpone all non-essential social and cultural gatherings.
- Local authorities to have a dialogue with organizers of sporting events and competitions involving large gatherings and they may be advised to postpone such events.
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- Local authorities to have a dialogue with opinion leaders and religious leaders to regulate mass gatherings and shouldensure no overcrowding/at least one metre distance between people.
- Local authorities to have meeting with traders associations and other stakeholders to regulate hours, exhibit Do’s and Don’ts andtake upa communication drive in market places like sabzi mandi, anaj mandi, bus depots,railway stations, post-offices etc.,where essential services are provided.
- All commercial activities must keep a distance of one meter between customers. Measures to reduce peak hour crowding in markets.
- Non-essential travel should be avoided. Buses, Trains and aeroplanes to maximize social distancing in public transport besides ensuring regular and proper disinfection of surfaces.
- Hospitals to follow necessary protocol related with COVID-19 management as prescribed and restrict family/friends/children visiting patients in hospitals.
- Hygiene and physical distancing has to be maintained. Shaking hands and hugging as a matter of greeting to be avoided.
- Special protective measures for delivery men/ women working in online ordering services.
- Keep communities informed consistently and constantly.