PM appreciates initiatives to control COVID-19 in Ahmednagar district of Maha

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Mumbai, May 20 (PTI)Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday appreciated the efforts taken by authorities in the Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra to tackle the coronavirus pandemic and prevent fatalities, officials said.

The prime minister had video conference with collectors of 60 districts in the country, including 17 in Maharashtra, along with chief ministers of 11 states.

Ahmednagar collector Rajendra Bhosale apprised him of the initiatives being implemented in the district, said a statement from the state information department here.

Modi expressed satisfaction at the steps being taken by the district authorities, it added.

The central Maharashtra district had recorded 2,42,317 infection cases as of Wednesday, including 2,575 deaths.

In the first wave, the case fatality rate (CFR) of the district was 1.5 percent which fell to 0.9 percent in the ongoing second wave, Bhosale said.

All the households in the district were surveyed and patients who had co-morbidities were given timely treatment which brought down the CFR, he told the PM.

During the first wave four lakh tests had been conducted while in the second wave around 5 lakh samples have been tested so far, the collector said.

The `Hivre Bazaar pattern' promoted by Popatrao Pawar, a Padma Shri recipient village Sarpanch from the district who ensured that his village became coronavirus-free, was implemented in the district, he said.

Under Pawar's guidance, 1,316 gram panchayats implemented the pattern under which four teams of health officials and NGOs were formed to survey each household.

In other initiatives, a nodal officer was appointed to oversee the refund of excess fees charged by private hospitals to the patients, the collector said.

Official machinery at the village-level was activated, he said, adding that he himself toured every taluka in the district at least twice a month and spoke to village officials to boost their morale.

Special efforts were taken to set up oxygen production plants in the district and a deputy collector-level officer was put in charge of each plant, he told the prime minister.

Nodal officers were appointed for hospitals to ensure smooth oxygen supply, Bhosale said.

New arrivals in villages were sent to isolation rooms.

During the second wave even home isolation was stopped and all coronavirus positive persons were admitted to COVID care centres, the collector said.

Those violating curfew orders and loitering in public were subjected to rapid antigen tests, he said.

Chiefminister Uddhav Thackeray also praised the district administration's efforts, the statement added. PTI MR SPK KRK KRK