The Centre's 'Har Ghar Dastak' campaign will continue till December 31 with a focus on 100 per cent first dose COVID-19 vaccination, and completing the backlog of second dose vaccination, informed official sources on Tuesday.
This came after Union Health Ministry Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on November 22 wrote a letter to Additional Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary of all States and Union Territories to ramp up the COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country under the campaign.
With the 'Har Ghar Dastak' campaign, the Centre is targeting to complete maximum single dose and second dose adult COVID-19 vaccination in the country. It was launched on November 2 on the occasion of Dhanwantari Diwas.
Sources also said, "The new COVID-19 Omicron variant doesn't escape RT-PCR and RAT tests. The States have been advised to ramp up testing for early identification of positive cases, and early management." "States are advised to have one or multiple meetings today between health officials, Airport Health Organisation, Bureau of Immigration and other relevant agencies at the state level for the smooth operation of revised travel guidelines which will be effective from midnight today," official sources said.
Earlier on Sunday, the Centre has issued revised international travel guidelines in the wake of the new COVID variant.
Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya informed Parliament on Tuesday that India has so far not reported any case of the new COVID-19 variant Omicron, underlining that the government has taken measures to ensure that it does not reach the country.
The Centre has issued an advisory after looking at developments globally and is keeping a close watch on ports, he said, adding genome sequencing of suspected cases is being done.
During Question Hour in the Rajya Sabha, the minister said, "Omicron variant has been found in 14 countries now. It is being studied here although it has not been reported in India." Stressing that there is a need to take all precautions, the minister said, "We have learnt a lot during the pandemic. We have resources and labs to check.
At present, no Omicron variant has been reported in India and all measures have been taken to ensure this variant does not reach the country, he said.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified Omicron as a 'variant of concern' According to the Minister, the COVID-19 situation is under control in India at present but the country is not free from this disease and Covid-appropriate behaviour should be followed.
The house-door vaccination drive is still on and about 70-80 lakh doses are being administered on a daily basis, he said, adding 124 crore doses of Covid vaccine has been administered so far in the country.
Responding to another query, the Union Minister said there was slow down in testing of tuberculosis during the Covid lockdown period but surveillance and testing has been stepped up now.