Dharamshala: Sikyong Dr Lobsang Sangay and Health Kalon Choekyong Wangchuk chaired the routine Friday briefing of the CTA Wuhan-COVID-19 Task Force Committee to review the latest status and measures underway in tackling the COVID-19 situation in Tibetan settlements in India, Nepal and Bhutan.
The meeting was attended by Health Secretary Palden Dhondup, Home Secretary Tsewang Dolma Shosur, task force members and Head of Security Branch Office, Tenzin Kalsang.
Deputy Secretary Tenzin Kunsang, Department of Health briefed Sikyong on the plans to establish COVID-19 care centre in Dharamshala and if required, the Department may extend the facility in other Tibetan settlements with DOHe branch hospitals. The department is also in the process of facilitating medical equipment to these facilities.
Namgyal Gendun of Health department updated that a total number of 64 voluntary nurses,16 drivers are currently operating in Tibetan settlements and for those settlements with acute shortage of volunteers, the health department has issued urgent announcements calling for more volunteers.
Noting the importance of healthcare workers especially in a health crisis as the COVID-19, Sikyong directed the task force to ensure there are sufficient healthcare staff in all the settlements.
Health dept’s Tenzin Dolkar briefed the Sikyong on daily thermal screening being conducted in the settlements. As a result of the thorough tests, two new cases of TB were detected. She also expressed concerns over the need for greater cooperation from the public in administering the tests.
Ngawang Tenzin of Health dept reported that a total of 1374 people underwent thermal screening in Gangkyi and Men Tsee Khang area and so far no positive cases have been detected.
The Mental Health committee explained in detail their active monitoring of vulnerable groups like elderly, pregnant mothers, addiction and mental health patients. In turn, tele-counselling is provided to those under quarantine, following established protocol for the interactions.
Head of Security Branch Office, Tenzin Kalsang briefed on the tight security being maintained at Gangkyi entrance and basketball ground as per the directives from the Kashag. Staff of Department of Security have been stationed at the gates to register details of entrants and maintain a record for tracing in case of virus contraction.
Home Secretary Tsewang Dolma updated that they have responded to 1500 stranded people who have reached out through applications and phone calls, of which 700 have been identified as residents of Dharamshala.
Under the Department of Home, chiefly, the elderly and vulnerable sections receive stipends. The home department has requested sponsors for early release of funds and received them accordingly.
In its latest efforts to address the urgent needs of the destitute elderlies and students, the Home department has distributed emergency relief aid amounting to a total of 1.8 crore for the destitute Tibetan elderlies and students in India, Nepal and Bhutan.