New Delhi [India], April 16 (ANI): Taking intensive efforts for implementing containment measures to combat COVID-19 outbreak in the country, the Union Health Ministry has classified 170 hotspot districts in the Red Zone, while 207 non-hotspot districts with clusters and non-infected districts have been classified as Green Zone.The Centre has named hotspot districts as Red Zone as it needs to have focused attention in these areas reporting a large number of COVID-19 cases and high growth rate.For hotspots within the Red Zone, the Centre has identified about 170 districts. This is further divided into two groups i.e. there are 123 hotspot districts with a large outbreak and 47 hotspot districts with clusters.The inclusion criteria for hotspots (Red Zone), according to the government, includes, "Highest caseload districts contributing to more than 80 per cent of cases in India or highest caseload districts contributing to more than 80 per cent of cases for each State in India or districts with doubling rate less than four days."The Central government said that hotspot districts can be turned to Orange Zone when no cases are reported in 14 days and this zone could be turned to Green Zone when further no positive cases are reported in the next 14 days.To name a few, Mumbai (873) in Maharashtra, South Delhi (332), Hyderabad (213) in Telangana, Jaipur (170) in Rajasthan, and Kasaragod (155) in Kerala are top five districts from where a large number of COVID-19 cases are being reported."With respect to these hotspots, the districts which need implementation of outbreak containment plan and the districts where clusters of cases are found, their states also need to identify hotspots based on doubling rate of confirmed cases. This exercise of identification of hotspots has to be done on a weekly basis (every Monday) or earlier. Strict containment measures need to be implemented in these hotspots," said Preeti Sudan, Union Health Secretary in a letter written to all States and Union Territories.Similarly, there are about 207 non-hotspots districts with clusters. "For non-hotspot districts reporting cases, States need to ensure that containment measures are taken so as to ensure that cases in these areas can be contained. States also need to undertake effective surveillance of SARI and ILI cases in districts not having any confirmed cases so far besides ensuring dedicated COVID hospitals," Sudan said.For the Green Zone, the health ministry stated that a district that has not reported positive coronavirus cases can be marked under this zone. Also, any district currently in hotspots can be moved to the Green category if no new cases arise in 28 days."It is requested that States/UTs should utilize the extended lockdown period to the maximum extent to convert the hotspots (Red) to Orange and in turn Green Zones and contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country," she said."This period should be utilised effectively and there should be a concerted effort for implementing containment measures in a focused manner. Containment operation would be deemed over when there is no case reported in 28 days from an area after the last case tests negative. Hotspots (designated Red Zones) will be assumed to be undertaking effective containment activities if no case is reported in the next 14 days (designated Orange Zones) and will be deemed successful in containment if no case is reported for 28 days (designated Green Zones)," Sudan said.India's tally of coronavirus cases has gone up to 11,933, said the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Wednesday.Out of the total tally, 10,197 cases are active while 1,344 patients have been cured/discharged and migrated, and 392 people have succumbed to the virus. (ANI)

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