For the first time in 2021, TN reports over 4,000 COVID-19 cases: How the state aims to curb the spread?

Amid steering through the COVID-19 resurgence, the state of Tamil Nadu is gearing up for a fresh battle of curbing the second wave of the pandemic. The state has disturbingly been witnessing a sharp rise in fresh cases in recent times and been alarmed by an unprecedented spike in the Total Positivity Rate (TPR). With the view of containing the spread, the Tamil Nadu government has on Thursday announced fresh restrictions and unveiled the measures of how it is aiming to combat the invisible menace. 

In a statement in which the government has highlighted fresh restrictions, it has urged people above 45 years to get vaccinated in government and recognized private hospitals within two weeks. The government has also formed 15 special teams for 15 zones in Chennai. Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary Rajiv Ranjan has issued the order to form the field-level teams to review, monitor, and execute measures to curb the spread in the city.

The government aims to mitigate the transmission of the human to human transmitting virus by installing these special teams and it also has said that such field-level teams will be formed in every district across the state. While restricting the theaters and malls to operate at 50% capacity, the government said that there would be no relaxation in the containment zones and people living in such zones would be barricaded for unnecessary movement. 

The government aims to execute round-the-clock surveillance measures on containment zones and the police personnel, the officials from the local administration and the health department will be deployed to the containment zones to ensure that people living in these zones won't exit for an invalid reason. The government said that it will set up a team of volunteers to distribute the essential items and commodities to the people living in the containment zones. 

The statement said, "The general public should wear masks mandatorily. The infectious disease can be controlled effectively if only they wash hands at home and outside periodically, maintain social distance and avoid stepping out unnecessarily, and extend full support". The government has also directed the police, health, revenue, and local body officials to hold fever camps, check people with symptoms of fever, cold, and cough daily at the doorstep and perform contact tracing and further tests. 

The government has also directed the district collectors and the commissioner of Greater Chennai Corporation to enforce the measures. According to reports, the government has set up a team led by the Commissioner of Revenue Administration and Disaster Management to monitor the situation and advisories are being issued to the department concerned for preventive measures. The statement has said that the health department was conducting 80,000 RT-PCR tests a day in the state and it has increased the testing in affected areas. 

The government has on Thursday unveiled a fresh set of restrictions and guidelines. Some of the restrictions that would come to place on April 10 include reducing the capacity of theaters from 100% to 50%, curbing unnecessary movements, restricting the cultural and religious events in the state, and limiting the footfall at shopping malls. These restrictions would come into effect on April 10 and will be in place till April 30. 

Tamil Nadu is one of the Indian states to report a high caseload and the number of COVID-19 cases is increasing day by day. For the first time in 2021, Tamil Nadu has reported over 4,000 cases. The state has reported 4,276 fresh cases on Thursday, 1,869 discharges, and 19 deaths. According to the state health department, Tamil Nadu has reported 9,15,386 COVID-19 cases so far as of Thursday of which 30,131 are active, 8,72,415 have been discharged, and 12, 840 had succumbed to the viral infection.