COVID-19: BMC issues SOP for contact tracing and follow up action

Bhubaneswar: As the number of COVID-19 positive cases are rising in Bhubaneswar after a brief lull, the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) today issued a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for contact tracing and follow up action.
BMC said contact tracing will be done in a different and focused manner. For this, the positive cases can be divided into three categories- returnees, local contacts and hospital patient cases. The returnees and locals contacts will again be dividedinto sub categories.
Returnees: (i) Under home quarantine and (ii) Under paid/institutional quarantine. Local contacts: (i) Slum area cases (II) Non slum area cases.
The SOP follows:
A. Returnees
► All the Returnees from outside state/countries have been registered and are under quarantine either in home or institutional/Paid quarantine. Once any case from home quarantine is detected. The contact tracing will broadly cover the following:
• After local inquiry if it is found that the family is in strict home quarantine, then only the family members will be covered under primary contact. In case of suspicion of strict home quarantine protocol, The family as well as their secondary contacts will be included for contact tracing. Some of the immediate neighbours and the nearby shops who are in contact with them will also be taken as contacts. Their houses will be put under home quarantine with active surveillance and in case of symptoms appearing, samples will be collected for testing. The house and its adjacent areas will be sanitized.
► For positive cases from institutional/Paid quarantine the contact tracing will cover as follows:
• The contacts will cover the mode of travel like in case of private vehicle/hired vehicle the drivers/Co-passengers etc who will be identified as contact and will be quarantined.
• The Support staffs of the institutional quarantine facility/Hotels who could possibly have came in contact will be included for contact tracing and all symptomatic contacts will be tested.
• The quarantine centres/hotels need to be properly sanitized.
B. Local Contacts
► The Local Contacts can be from non slum areas or Slum areas. For non-slum category positive cases, the contact tracing will cover the following aspects.
• All primary contacts like family members/close relatives
• Secondary contacts like places visited frequently and contacts of other family members
• Monitoring the travel and people who were in contact with him since last 7-10 days.
• The nearby households, shops/vendors will be put to quarantine and will be subjected to active surveillance for minimum 7 days.
• The ZDCs to keep all the quarantined homes identified for the positive case under strict vigilance with the help of local police so that the inhabitants of the quarantined house are adhering to the home quarantine guidelines.
► For local contacts belong to slum areas the contact tracing should be more exhaustive and aggressive. The RRT teams to visit the area to identify a cluster to be created for putting all the families to home quarantine. Cluster should be created with adequate coverage of houses for quarantine. Active Surveillance will continue in the slum area for 7 to 14 days. The sanitation activities will be undertaken on regular basis in the slum area. The Ward Level COVID Sachetak committee will be activated for intensive awareness in the slum area.
C. Hospital Patient Cases
► There are several cases coming up when patients admitted in Govt/Pvt hospitals are being tested positive for COVID. In such cases the contact tracing will be done as follows:
• The treating doctors/nurses/para-medics/attendants shall be put to quarantine immediately. Their testing will be done after 5 to 7 days of the contact and after release of report they will be allowed to work as usual. However in case anyone of the above develops some symptoms then testing will be done immediately.
• The primary and secondary contacts of the patients will be included in contact tracing and home quarantined. In case any of the primary/secondary contacts develops symptoms then they can be tested for COVID.
• Other patients who have come in contact with the doctors/nurses should be treated as secondary contacts and appropriate testing protocol will be applicable.

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