Suryakant Jena

Bhubaneswar: The State Cabinet on Friday approved the Odisha Covid-19 Regulations 2020, a set of health advisory measures for immediate implementation at all level in the wake of Coronavirus pandemic across the globe.

As per the directive, the State government has made it clear that 'Empowered Officers' - Director of Public Health, Director of Health Services, Director of Medical Education and Training, all collectors and Municipal Commissioners have been authorized to take measures necessary to combat any outbreak of the Covid-19.

All government hospitals (govt and private) should have Covid-19 corners for the screening of suspected cases of the viral disease. All health institutions during the screening of such cases shall record all data including all contacts and history of travel of the affected to any country or region where the viral disease has been witnessed.

The health notification has clarified that anyone found disseminating any information on Covid-19 without ascertaining any facts and prior clearance of the empowered officers will be found guilty of punishable offence.

Similarly, in order to prevent any private institutions from taking undue benefits from the situation through unscrupulous means, the government has said that undertaking of Covid-19 diagnosis will not be permissible in any private laboratories. It may be mentioned that the State government has set up a medical test facility for diagnosis of Covid-19 at RMRC, Bhubaneswar. Another centre will also be opened at SCB Cuttack if it is needed.

Any person with a history of travel in last 14 days to a country or area from where Covid-19 has been reported must voluntarily report to the State Control room (067-2390466) or to the State Surveillance Officer, IDSP (9439994857 / 9439994859) Or Toll-free number 104 so that necessary steps may be initiated.

Empowered officers may initiate any action under section 188 of IPC against any person who refuses to comply with such advice of isolation or admission. The State health department in its notification has also listed out elaborate containment measures to prevent the spread of the disease.

These regulations shall remain valid for a period of one year with immediate effect, the notification stated.