Health – Eastern Mirror https://easternmirrornagaland.com The latest and breaking news from Nagaland, northeast India, India and the world. Current affairs and news of politics from around the world, latest updates on business news, sports, arts and entertainment Mon, 01 Jun 2020 19:21:16 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://easternmirrornagaland.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/cropped-FavIcon-32x32.png Health – Eastern Mirror https://easternmirrornagaland.com 32 32 Covid- 19: Immune Boosting and Care Through Ayurveda. https://easternmirrornagaland.com/covid-19-immune-boosting-and-care-through-ayurveda/ Mon, 01 Jun 2020 03:32:49 +0000 https://easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=315324 With the Lockdown 4 coming to an end and most of the restrictions being lifted we have to make our mind that we have to live with Covid-19 together till a vaccine is developed. Day by day the number of cases of Covid-19 infection in India is increasing. With the spread over more than 28 states, isolation and social distancing is the general measures taken up by the public promoted by the government in the form of lock down. Among the confirmed cases 60-65% of the subjects belong to four states viz., Kerala, Maharashtra, Delhi, Gujarat and Rajasthan. That means other states are also having active cases. Also the cases in Nagaland are increasing in an alarming rate and the treatment lies in enhancing our Immunity the natural way and also maintaining social distancing. Ayurveda documented Epidemics/Pandemics under the context of Janapadodhvamsa (conditions devastate the human settlements). Similarly, infectious/communicable diseases have been considered under SankramikaRogas. There were three major infectious diseases which were mainly handled by Vaids and Hakims in India in the past: ● India suffered from infectious diseases even when allopathic medicine was not introduced in the country. In 1720, there was an outbreak of Plague and eradicated...

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With the Lockdown 4 coming to an end and most of the restrictions being lifted we have to make our mind that we have to live with Covid-19 together till a vaccine is developed. Day by day the number of cases of Covid-19 infection in India is increasing. With the spread over more than 28 states, isolation and social distancing is the general measures taken up by the public promoted by the government in the form of lock down. Among the confirmed cases 60-65% of the subjects belong to four states viz., Kerala, Maharashtra, Delhi, Gujarat and Rajasthan. That means other states are also having active cases. Also the cases in Nagaland are increasing in an alarming rate and the treatment lies in enhancing our Immunity the natural way and also maintaining social distancing.

Ayurveda documented Epidemics/Pandemics under the context of Janapadodhvamsa (conditions devastate the human settlements). Similarly, infectious/communicable diseases have been considered under SankramikaRogas. There were three major infectious diseases which were mainly handled by Vaids and Hakims in India in the past:

● India suffered from infectious diseases even when allopathic medicine was not introduced in the country. In 1720, there was an outbreak of Plague and eradicated by the 19th century. The British government honoured an Indian Vaidya DiviGoplacharyulu, Madras Province with the title of Vaidyaratna for his efforts in managing plague with Hemadipanka.

● India also suffered from Cholera in 1817 where 12 million deaths occurred. Another 15 million deaths occurred between 1817-1865. Cholera troubled India even when modern medicine existed.

● India suffered another major outbreak in the form of Spanish Flu killing 17-18 million Indians between June-Aug in 1918. During this outbreak also Vaidyas / Hakims have helped the Government.

At present India is having the growth rate which is steadily increasing daily. While Europe and US have the highest growth rate in the number of cases. The role of social distancing and lock down cannot be ignored while the individual innate immunity of the Indian population also plays a major role in keeping the infection under check.

To preclude the spread of the Covid-19 please practice the following (NIA, Jaipur):

1)  Protect Your Self: One’s own Safety lies in one’s own hand so it’s the duty of everyone to follow all these following points.

•          Don’t touch your eyes, mouth or nose with unclean hands.

•          Avoid touching surfaces of wall, floor, table, doors, handles, switch boards, biometrics machine, etc.

•          Wash your hand regularly with plenty of antiseptic soap and water before and after food preparation and consumption.

•          Frequently wash the hand after touching pets and animal products.

•          Regular bath is advised.

•          Keep an alcohol-based sanitiser ready for times when soap and water are not available.

•          Keep distance of at least 2 meter from anyone coughing or sneezing.

•          Follow no-touch greeting to avoid germs contraction – “Namaste” or Hand Waving over Handshake is preferred.

•          Individual having the sore throat like symptoms should do gargling with Luke warm salt water.

•          Avoid street foods intake and avoid visiting Salons and Spas.

•          Disinfect equipment’s and working area once in a day.

•          Use foot operated peddle dust bins.

•          Download “AarogyaSetu” App by MoH& FW for Corona Virus contact tracing.

2)         Protect your loved ones:

•          Don’t sneeze or cough into your hands.

•          Use a tissue or napkin and throw it away immediately.

•          Sneeze in the inner side of your bent elbow.

•          Don’t travel or visit crowded places if you’re sick.

•          Do wear a mask if you’re sick and also if you are taking care of someone with the symptoms.

3)  Protect your community: Nagaland is a tribal dominated State and all its Civil Societies, NGO’s Tribal Leaders has been strong enough to contain Covid-19 till date by strictly adhering to tribal laws and practice. The state government officials, district administration, frontline workers and police also deserve a big applause for their relentless services.

•          If you have a fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, stay indoors

•          If you feel unwell, seek medical attention.

•          Do not share and forward messages which creates panic among the public.

•          Authentic information coming through medical experts should be shared.

•          Avoid taking part in the community activities like – attending gathering, marriages, death rituals, conferences, fairs, shopping mall, cinema theatres, gyms, swimming pools etc.

•          Avoid /minimize the travelling if you are suffering from fever and cough.

•          Call healthcare professionals and follow their advice

Pathya (Beneficial for Body/Do’s)

•          Wash hands regularly

•          Wear masks

•          Yoga & Meditation

•          Vegetarian Food

•          Consult Doctor if any Flu like Symptoms

Apathya (Harmful for Body/Dont’s/Avoid)

•          Avoid Crowded places

•          Alcohol & Tobacco consumption

•          Drug Abuse

•          Non-Vegetarian Food

•          Self Medication.

Please Download “AYUSH Sanjivani” App. The app has been developed by the Ministry of AYUSH and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY). The AYUSH Sanjivani mobile app will help to generate data on acceptance and usage of AYUSH advocacies and measures among the population and its impact on the prevention of COVID-19. It is expected to reach out to a target of 50 lakh people. The Ministry of AYUSH has recommended the following self-care guidelines for preventive health measures and boosting immunity with special reference to respiratory health. These are supported by Ayurvedic literature and scientific publications (Recommendations available in Ministry of AYUSH website).

Recommended Measures

I. General Measures

1.Drink warm water throughout the day.

2.Daily practice of Prayer & reading of holy books

3.Daily practice of Yogasana, Pranayama and meditation for at least 30 minutes as advised by Ministry of AYUSH (#YOGA at Home #Stay Home #Stay Safe).

4.Spices like Haldi (Turmeric), Jeera (Cumin), Dhaniya (Coriander) and Lahsun (Garlic) are recommended in cooking.

II. Ayurvedic Immunity Promoting Measures

1.Take Chyavanprash 10gm (1tsf) in the morning. Diabetics should take sugar free Chyavanprash.

2.Drink herbal tea / decoction (Kadha) made from Tulsi (Basil), Dalchini (Cinnamon), Kalimirch (Black pepper), Shunthi (Dry Ginger) and Munakka (Raisin) – once or twice a day. Add jaggery (natural sugar) and / or fresh lemon juice to your taste, if needed.

3.Golden Milk- Half tea spoon Haldi (turmeric) powder in 150 ml hot milk – once or twice a day.

III Simple Ayurvedic Procedures

1.Nasal application – Apply sesame oil / coconut oil or Ghee in both the nostrils (PratimarshNasya) in morning and evening.

2.Oil pulling therapy- Take 1 table spoon sesame or coconut oil in mouth. Do not drink, Swish in the mouth for 2 to 3 minutes and spit it off followed by warm water rinse. This can be done once or twice a day.

IV During dry cough / sore throat

1. Steam inhalation with fresh Pudina (Mint) leaves or Ajwain (Caraway seeds) can be practiced once in a day.

2. Lavang (Clove) powder mixed with natural sugar / honey can be taken 2-3 times a day in case of cough or throat irritation.

3.         These measures generally treat normal dry cough and sore throat. However, it is best to consult doctors if these symptoms persist.

Dr.Imlikumba BAMS, MD (Ayu)
Medical Officer (Ayurveda)
North Eastern Institute of Folk Medicine (NEIFM),
(An Autonomous Institute under the Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India)
East Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh, India
E-mail: imlikumba@gmail.com
Youtube: Health naturally

The author is working as Medical Officer (Ayur.), in the North Eastern Institute of Folk Medicine, Pasighat, Ministry of AYUSH, Government of India.

The above measures can be followed to the extent possible as per an individual’s convenience. These measures are recommended by eminent Vaidyas from across the Country as they may possibly boost an individual’s immunity against infections.

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Social isolation may up heart attack and death risk https://easternmirrornagaland.com/social-isolation-may-up-heart-attack-and-death-risk/ Fri, 22 May 2020 08:45:55 +0000 https://easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=313720 London, May 22 (IANS): Researchers have revealed that people who are socially isolated are over 40 per cent more likely to have a cardiovascular event, such as a heart attack or stroke, than those who were socially integrated. The study also found that those who are socially isolated are almost 50 per cent more likely to die from any cause. “We have known for some time that feeling lonely or lacking contact with close friends and family can have an impact on your physical health,” said study researcher Dr Janine Gronewold from University Hospital in Essen, Germany. “What this study tells us is that having strong social relationships is of high importance for your heart health and similar to the role of classical protective factors such as having a healthy blood pressure, acceptable cholesterol levels, and normal weight,” Gronewold added. For the findings, the researchers analysed data from 4,316 individuals (average age 59.1 years) who were recruited into the large community-based study between 2000 and 2003. The participants entered the study with no known cardiovascular disease and they were followed for an average of 13 years. At the start of the research, information was collected on different types of social...

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London, May 22 (IANS): Researchers have revealed that people who are socially isolated are over 40 per cent more likely to have a cardiovascular event, such as a heart attack or stroke, than those who were socially integrated.

The study also found that those who are socially isolated are almost 50 per cent more likely to die from any cause.

“We have known for some time that feeling lonely or lacking contact with close friends and family can have an impact on your physical health,” said study researcher Dr Janine Gronewold from University Hospital in Essen, Germany.

“What this study tells us is that having strong social relationships is of high importance for your heart health and similar to the role of classical protective factors such as having a healthy blood pressure, acceptable cholesterol levels, and normal weight,” Gronewold added.

For the findings, the researchers analysed data from 4,316 individuals (average age 59.1 years) who were recruited into the large community-based study between 2000 and 2003.

The participants entered the study with no known cardiovascular disease and they were followed for an average of 13 years.

At the start of the research, information was collected on different types of social support, with social integration assessed based on marital status and cohabitation, contact with close friends and family, and membership of the political, religious, community, sports or professional organisations.

During the 13.4 years of follow-up, 339 cardiovascular events such as heart attacks or strokes occurred, and there were 530 deaths among the study participants.

After adjusting for other factors that might have contributed to these events and deaths (for example, standard cardiovascular risk factors), a lack of social integration was found to increase the future risk of cardiovascular events by 44 per cent and to increase the risk of death from all causes by 47 per cent.

The findings showed that a lack of financial support was associated with a 30 per cent increased risk of cardiovascular events.

“This observation is of particular interest in the present discussion on the COVID-19 pandemic, where social contacts are or have been relevantly restricted in most societies,” Gronewold said.

“We need to take this seriously, work out how social relationships affect our health, and find effective ways of tackling the problems associated with social isolation to improve our overall health and longevity,” said study researcher Dirk M Hermann.

The study is scheduled to be presented on May 23 at the European Academy of Neurology (EAN) Virtual Congress.

Last month, another research published in the journal Thorax, found that social isolation is linked to a heightened risk of hospital admission for respiratory disease among older adults.

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People with lower education, income became more health conscious https://easternmirrornagaland.com/people-with-lower-education-income-became-more-health-conscious/ Mon, 18 May 2020 08:50:05 +0000 https://easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=313106 New Delhi, May 16 (IANS): While about 20 per cent of the people with lower education or income were taking care of their health before the lockdown, post the spread of the coronavirus, about 65 per cent of those from the two categories have started taking care of their health, according to the latest IANS-CVoter survey. The nationwide survey indicated that 65.4 per cent of those with lower education have started taking care of their health since the lockdown and 64 per cent of those in the lower income have been doing the same. In terms of gender, about 20 per cent of both males and females were taking care of their health before the coronavirus spread. Post the imposition of the lockdown, while 68 per cent of males have started taking care of their health, 62 per cent of the females have been doing the same. Age wise, about 43 per cent of those above 60 years were taking care of their health. Post the infection pread, the numbers have gone up to 49 per cent. After the lockdown, 72 per cent of those below 25 years; 66 per cent of those between 25 and 45 years; and 67...

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New Delhi, May 16 (IANS): While about 20 per cent of the people with lower education or income were taking care of their health before the lockdown, post the spread of the coronavirus, about 65 per cent of those from the two categories have started taking care of their health, according to the latest IANS-CVoter survey.

The nationwide survey indicated that 65.4 per cent of those with lower education have started taking care of their health since the lockdown and 64 per cent of those in the lower income have been doing the same.

In terms of gender, about 20 per cent of both males and females were taking care of their health before the coronavirus spread. Post the imposition of the lockdown, while 68 per cent of males have started taking care of their health, 62 per cent of the females have been doing the same.

Age wise, about 43 per cent of those above 60 years were taking care of their health. Post the infection pread, the numbers have gone up to 49 per cent.

After the lockdown, 72 per cent of those below 25 years; 66 per cent of those between 25 and 45 years; and 67 per cent of those between 45 and 60 years have started taking care of their health.

Similarly, about 65 per cent of people having lower, middle and higher education have started taking care of their health, up from about 20 per cent earlier.

A huge jump can also be seen in people having lower and middle income — up from 20 per cent before the lockdown to about 70 per cent now.

While 32 per cent of those from higher income groups were taking care of their health before the lockdown, the numbers have gone up to 56 per cent now.

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Could BCG, a 100-year-old vaccine for tuberculosis, protect against coronavirus? https://easternmirrornagaland.com/could-bcg-a-100-year-old-vaccine-for-tuberculosis-protect-against-coronavirus/ Fri, 08 May 2020 17:23:28 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=311520 Kylie Quinn, RMIT University; Joanna Kirman, University of Otago; Katie Louise Flanagan, University of Tasmania, and Magdalena Plebanski, RMIT University This week, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced it will donate A$10 million to help fund an Australian trial testing whether a very old vaccine, BCG, can be used against a new threat, COVID-19. So what is the BCG vaccine and what might its place be in the fight against coronavirus? The ABCs of BCG The BCG vaccine has been used for nearly a century to protect against tuberculosis, a bacterial disease that affects the lungs. Tuberculosis is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. BCG is short for Bacillus Calmette-Guérin, as it was created by Léon Charles Albert Calmette and Jean-Marie Camille Guérin in the early 1900s. To make the vaccine, they used Mycobacterium bovis, a bacterium found in cows and closely related to Mycobacterium tuberculosis. They grew it on a nutrient-rich jelly in the lab for nearly 13 years. The bacterium adapted to this comfortable lifestyle by losing elements in its DNA it no longer needed, including elements that cause disease. This process is called attenuation and it results in a live but weakened microbe that can...

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Kylie Quinn, RMIT University; Joanna Kirman, University of Otago; Katie Louise Flanagan, University of Tasmania, and Magdalena Plebanski, RMIT University

This week, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced it will donate A$10 million to help fund an Australian trial testing whether a very old vaccine, BCG, can be used against a new threat, COVID-19.

So what is the BCG vaccine and what might its place be in the fight against coronavirus?

The ABCs of BCG

The BCG vaccine has been used for nearly a century to protect against tuberculosis, a bacterial disease that affects the lungs. Tuberculosis is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

BCG is short for Bacillus Calmette-Guérin, as it was created by Léon Charles Albert Calmette and Jean-Marie Camille Guérin in the early 1900s.

To make the vaccine, they used Mycobacterium bovis, a bacterium found in cows and closely related to Mycobacterium tuberculosis. They grew it on a nutrient-rich jelly in the lab for nearly 13 years. The bacterium adapted to this comfortable lifestyle by losing elements in its DNA it no longer needed, including elements that cause disease.

This process is called attenuation and it results in a live but weakened microbe that can be given to humans as a vaccine.


Read more: Coronavirus: could the pandemic be controlled using existing vaccines like MMR or BCG?


BCG is offered to infants in some parts of the world where there are still high rates of tuberculosis. It protects 86% of the time against some rarer forms of tuberculosis more common in children.

But it only protects about 50% of the time in adults.

Scientists and clinicians generally feel we need a better vaccine for tuberculosis. However, epidemiologists have noticed children who received BCG had significantly better overall health, with fewer respiratory infections and fewer deaths.

Immunologists suspect this is caused by a type of immune response called “trained immunity”.

Trained immunity is distinct from how we traditionally think of immunity, or “immune memory”, because it engages different types of immune cells.

Immune memory vs trained immunity

There are two main types of cells within our immune system: innate cells, which respond rapidly to microbes that cause disease, and adaptive cells, which initially respond quite slowly.

Adaptive cells include B cells, which make antibodies to block infection, and T cells, which can kill infected cells. Importantly, adaptive cells can remember particular microbes for years, or even decades, after we first encounter them.

This phenomenon is called “immune memory”.

When adaptive immune cells encounter the same microbe a second or subsequent time, they respond much more quickly, and the immune system can effectively clear an infection before it causes disease. Immune memory is why often we don’t get infected with a specific microbe, like chickenpox, more than once.

Most of our current vaccines exploit immune memory to protect us from infection.


Read more: Where are we at with developing a vaccine for coronavirus?


For decades, scientists believed innate cells lacked the ability to remember previous encounters with microbes. However, we’ve recently learnt some innate cells, such as monocytes, can be “trained” during an encounter with a microbe. Training can program innate cells to activate more quickly when they next encounter a microbe – any microbe.

Some live attenuated vaccines, such as BCG, can trigger trained immunity, which can enhance early control of other infections. This raises the tantalising possibility that BCG could train innate cells to improve early control of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, to reduce COVID-19 disease or even prevent infection.

And as a bonus, BCG could potentially protect us against other pathogens too.

The BCG vaccine targets trained immunity, whereas most other vaccines target immune memory. Kylie Quinn, Author provided

Could BCG protect against COVID-19?

We don’t know yet whether BCG will reduce the severity of COVID-19, but the vaccine has some interesting features.

First, BCG is a potent stimulator of the immune system. Currently, it’s used alongside other therapies to treat bladder cancer and melanoma, because it can stimulate immune cells to attack the tumour.

BCG also seems to benefit lung immunity. As we mentioned, children who have had the vaccine appear to get fewer respiratory infections.

There’s a study underway in Melbourne looking at whether BCG can reduce symptoms of asthma in children.

And finally, BCG has been shown to limit viral infection. In one study, human volunteers were given BCG or a placebo one month before being infected with a virus. Volunteers who received BCG had a modest reduction in the amount of virus produced during infection compared to those who received the placebo.


Read more: Explainer: what is TB and am I at risk of getting it in Australia?


However, BCG can cause side-effects to be mindful of. It usually causes a small raised blister on the skin at the vaccine site and it can cause painful swelling in the surrounding lymph nodes.

Importantly, because it’s a live bacterium, it can spread from the vaccine site and cause disease, called disseminated BCG, in people who are immunodeficient, like people with HIV. This means BCG can’t be given to everyone.

Current clinical trials

The ultimate test of BCG as a preventative measure for COVID-19 is to run randomised clinical trials, which are now underway.

Researchers across Australia and the Netherlands are preparing to give BCG to the people who have arguably the highest risk of COVID-19: frontline health-care workers.

These phase III trials will collect data on whether workers vaccinated with BCG have fewer or less severe COVID-19 infections.

If BCG is shown to be effective, we’ll face other challenges. For example, supply of the vaccine is currently limited. Further, there are many different strains of BCG and they might not all provide the same protection against COVID-19.

Protection would likely start to wane relatively quickly. When trained immunity was tracked in humans after BCG, it started waning from three to 12 months after vaccination.

Protection would also not be as strong as what we see with many traditional vaccines, such as the MMR vaccine which protects against measles 94.1% of the time.


Read more: Here’s why the WHO says a coronavirus vaccine is 18 months away


So BCG would be most helpful for people at high risk of exposure, but it wouldn’t replace a traditional vaccine based on immune memory.

These studies are important to give us options. We need a complete toolkit for control of COVID-19, consisting of anti-viral and anti-inflammatory drugs and vaccines. But an effective COVID-19 vaccine is likely still many months, even years, away.

By repurposing an old, well-characterised vaccine, we could bridge this gap and provide some protection to our health-care workers as they confront COVID-19.

Kylie Quinn, Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fellow, School of Health and Biomedical Sciences, RMIT University; Joanna Kirman, Associate Professor, University of Otago; Katie Louise Flanagan, Infectious Diseases Specialist and Clinical Professor, University of Tasmania, and Magdalena Plebanski, Professor of Immunology, RMIT University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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Smokers and Alcoholics may face withdrawal symptoms amidst Lockdown 2.0 https://easternmirrornagaland.com/smokers-and-alcoholics-may-face-withdrawal-symptoms-amidst-lockdown-2-0/ Sat, 18 Apr 2020 06:21:05 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=305184 New Delhi, April 18 (IANSlife): India has witnessed a sudden upsurge in patients facing withdrawal symptoms due to the abrupt constraint on the availability of liquor and cigarettes. The sudden realisation that this essential (for some) is not readily available can trigger severe withdrawal symptoms among addicts. The same goes for those who are dependent on alcohol or even drugs. Drinkers and smokers can be classified into three categories — social (who consume occasionally), dependent (who consume moderately) and addicts (who cannot survive without nicotine or alcohol even for a day). While the first two categories can tackle this lockdown easily, the third category will suffer from withdrawal symptoms. People who are heavily dependent on alcohol or smoking — often face a range of cognitive and physical symptoms when they abruptly stop consuming. Alcohol and nicotine are sedative drugs that slow brain function. To compensate, many brain circuits increase the basal level of activity. Without alcohol present, these circuits become hyperactive, resulting in anxiety, hallucinations, seizures, and even death. In order to contain the further spread and contamination of Covid19 novel coronavirus, liquor and tobacco shops were closed temporarily on March 24, 2020 and continue to be shut during Lockdown...

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New Delhi, April 18 (IANSlife): India has witnessed a sudden upsurge in patients facing withdrawal symptoms due to the abrupt constraint on the availability of liquor and cigarettes. The sudden realisation that this essential (for some) is not readily available can trigger severe withdrawal symptoms among addicts. The same goes for those who are dependent on alcohol or even drugs.

Drinkers and smokers can be classified into three categories — social (who consume occasionally), dependent (who consume moderately) and addicts (who cannot survive without nicotine or alcohol even for a day). While the first two categories can tackle this lockdown easily, the third category will suffer from withdrawal symptoms.

People who are heavily dependent on alcohol or smoking — often face a range of cognitive and physical symptoms when they abruptly stop consuming. Alcohol and nicotine are sedative drugs that slow brain function. To compensate, many brain circuits increase the basal level of activity. Without alcohol present, these circuits become hyperactive, resulting in anxiety, hallucinations, seizures, and even death.

In order to contain the further spread and contamination of Covid19 novel coronavirus, liquor and tobacco shops were closed temporarily on March 24, 2020 and continue to be shut during Lockdown 2.0. Non-availability of these items during this time is likely to adversely affect the mental health of people who are binge-alcoholics or smokers.

IANSlife spoke to By Dr Paras, Life-leadership Coach and Psychotherapist regarding patients who may suffer from physical and psychological ailments, due to the unforeseen break in their classic pattern of consumption of alcohol or nicotine.

Alcohol and Nicotine trigger the release of serotonin in the brain’s reward system, which makes them so addictive. Addicts are not aware that regular consumption of alcohol or cigarettes changes their chemistry. Serotonin or the ‘feel good’ neurochemical is a mood enhancer. The short-term effect of alcohol may boost serotonin, to increase feelings of happiness and wellbeing, while the long-term repercussions of heavy alcohol use often include a decrease in serotonin production, leading to an increased chance of depression.

With long-term abuse of alcohol or nicotine, the brain’s reward systems slow down, however, when an addict chooses to abruptly break the habit of regular consumption instead of gradually decreasing consumption, the stimulatory effects on the reward system are no longer present. As a result, activity in the brain’s reward systems drops, which can include symptoms like depression and irritability. This applies to people who abuse drugs as well or are drug addicts.

People struggling with depressive withdrawal symptoms may have the highest manifestation called ‘delirium tremens.’ Severe withdrawal symptoms like shaking, confusion and hallucinations, after one suddenly quits requires proper counselling intervention to stabilise their overall mental wellness.

9 quintessential Symptoms of Withdrawals (Symptoms can range from mild to serious).

The intensity and length of these withdrawal symptoms can vary widely, depending on the noctoine, alcohol or drug addiction and your biological make-up. But the psychological symptoms can last for longer.

Unexplained craving: The craving factor tends to get stronger. The craving for smoking, alcohol or drugs can be so intense that the person is willing to do anything, even something which might be considered to be unethical, immoral or fatal.

Physical dependency: Like nausea, sweating, shaky hands, strong stomach cramps and vomitings.

Develop a high level of intolerance

Throbbing headache: Carving leaves you with throbbing headache

Anxiety, depression

Hallucination, about 12 to 24 hours after that last drink to seizures within the first 2 days after you stop. You can see, feel, or hear things that aren’t there.

Insomnia or Hypnagogic hallucinations. These can occur in the consciousness state between waking and sleeping.

Depression or dysphoria can last for longer

Constant mood swings

9 ways to keep your mental health from descending into chaos

By eliminating worry from the equation, you can better understand your mental health and determine what it is that you need to feel your best during this lockdown. Remember, the presence of any survival mechanism, which has a potential to make you feel “happy.” The brain releases four main ‘feel good’ chemicals – endorphin, oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine which inexplicably help you to cope up with the symptoms.

Practice Self-Hypnosis

A relaxation technique – Mental imaginary technique – Hypnosis is the answer to reduce peripheral conditions engrossed within you and the best way to learn self-meditation. You can practice daily for 10 to 15 minutes during bedtime and early in the morning as soon as you awake.

It is a tranquillity-like state in which you can heighten your focus and concentration. Hypnosis will allow you to bypass your conscious mind and introduce mindfulness with positive thoughts and ideas into your subconsciousness. Proper online counselling to demonstrate the procedure would be helpful.

You can relax on the bed, breath slowly and evenly from the stomach and not from the chest and deep dive into the past, remembering good things which can make you feel relaxed and very happy.

Exhale with every word that the way you want to feel, for instance – ‘energised’ and ‘calm’

By closing both the eyes, recalling a pleasing and a joyful image from the past, allow yourself to vividly experience the same by remembering the sound, smell, colour and taste of the moments.

After 10-15 minutes come back with the feeling of goodness you garnered from those memories.

The power of escapism

Opposite to mindfulness, are the miraculous benefits of the imagination and distractions. Escapism offers a way to take the pressure off and temporarily disconnect.

Who doesn’t love getting lost in the fantasy series or spending time on the best part of a movie because these appear as a part and parcel of the methods of escapism? It’s about creating your own fantasy in your imagination and living it. It is the tendency to seek distraction and relief from unpleasant realities. In taking some time to escape our everyday lives, we find ourselves better equipped to deal with situations and handle any obstacles we may be facing.

Escapism can take many forms, whether it’s going away to spend some time in a new place, watching every new film that comes out, or listening to music on the train and pretending you’re in a music video. It’s basically anything that removes you from your current situation. By engaging in some healthy escapism, you can leave any pressing concerns or worries behind. In a lot of cases, emotions are fleeting, and we simply need to ride them out. With distractions to remove you from the toxic headspace, this can happen without dragging you along for the process. It is advisable to take proper online counselling to demonstrate the procedure.

Nicotine Chewing gum

The idea is to keep your mouth busy for 18 hours continuously for a week or so. Nicotine replacement therapy, like gum, lozenges, or the patch or crunchy (healthy) food can come to the rescue. Nicotine chewing gum is believed to reduce cravings to smoke and is used to help people quit smoking. Nicotine chewing gum should be used together with a smoking cessation program, which may include counselling or specific behavioural change techniques.

Nicotine Inhalers

A nicotine inhaler looks similar to a large cigarette with a mouthpiece, but it’s actually a thin plastic tube that contains a nicotine cartridge inside. When you take a puff, the cartridge puts out a pure nicotine vapour that delivers most of the nicotine vapour to the mouth, where it’s absorbed into the bloodstream. Because it looks and acts like a cigarette, it can ease some of the habitual withdrawal symptoms as well. (Only recommend to use for 3 months or as per the smoking cessation program)

Talk to a friend, family member or a professional counsellor

It is natural to notice changes in your mood. You may feel impatient, irritable, anxious, nervous, angry, or sad. Talking about your feelings is very beneficial. Ask your family and friends for support and remind them to be patient with you. Make sure there is someone you can talk to during major discomfort or pain escalating due to carving during the process of giving up cigarettes. Take an immediate approach to a professional counsellor or talk to a friend to rationalise your mistaken thoughts about the symptoms.

Intellectual activities

Brain games are always the best choice for cognitive stimulation. Brain games could be the best component in helping manage and forget the craving and keep you engrossed over long periods of time. Scrabble. Sudoku. Crossword puzzles are best to go with.

Art therapy

Expressive art therapy is the use of creative arts as a form of therapy and is a fantastic field that has proven to work wonders in many people’s lives. Practising or creating art, is a phenomenal pathway of healing and life-enhancing. Art therapy involves the use of creative techniques such as drawing, painting, collage, colouring, or sculpting to help people express themselves artistically and examine the psychological and emotional undertones in their art can help a lot to cope with the symptoms of withdrawal.

Sound Healing Therapy

Also known as vibrational medicine for your brain to get cured quickly. Become independent and develop the ability to heal yourself holistically. Sound healing techniques harmonize the listener with the rhythms of nature. Sound healing sends your mind in a constant elemental state of vibration. When we are in resonance with the sound, our mind is in perfect balance. With the right sounds and scientific process of application, you can align yourself with the vibrations that foster health, happiness, success and unity. During a lockdown, grab your headphones, open your youtube and select some of the best crystal bowls sound sessions or tibetan singing bowl sessions.

Chakra Balancing

Chakra balancing is the process of restoring a harmonious flow of energy across the chakra system.The effect of well balanced chakras often translates into a feeling of well-being, relaxation, centeredness, increased vitality and embodiment of oneself. Smoking is loaded with toxins ranging from the obvious nicotine (highly addictive substance) to all the different chemical bound additives such as benzene, formaldehyde (embalming fluid), ammonia (toilet cleaner), acetone (nail polish remover), tar, carbon monoxide, arsenic, hydrogen cyanide, etc. Smoking affects the entire aura of the energy body in particular the throat chakra, the root chakra and especially the heart chakra. Using guided meditation, one can also activate all the chakras. Take a counselling to demonstrate a step-by-step meditation and align your chakras perfectly.

As the body and brain begin to heal, you will experience renewed motivation towards healthy habits in your life.

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Coronavirus: Kerala all set to conduct plasma therapy https://easternmirrornagaland.com/coronavirus-kerala-all-set-to-conduct-plasma-therapy/ Thu, 09 Apr 2020 08:54:59 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=302358 Thiruvananthapuram, April 9 (IANS): With the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) now giving nod to Kerala to conduct plasma therapy, a team of medical professionals is all set to do it. Kerala is the first state in the country to have been given the nod to try this out, as a task force was already in place. Anoopkumar, a member of the task force, said this process is done first by conducting a blood test on a coronavirus positive patient who had turned negative. “The positive patient after turning negative has to undergo two such tests to further clarify that it’s negative. Then after 14 days, the blood is tested to find the antibody presence. If it’s above a certain level and the person is above 55 kilograms in weight, then 800 ml of plasma is separated and it’s further split into 4 parts. Of this 200 ml is used to treat a patient whose condition is just turning serious,” said Anoopkumar. The plasma that’s collected can be stored for many weeks. Today, there are 80 people who tested positive for coronavirus and now negative. The antibody blood-testing will be done at the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology in the...

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Thiruvananthapuram, April 9 (IANS): With the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) now giving nod to Kerala to conduct plasma therapy, a team of medical professionals is all set to do it.

Kerala is the first state in the country to have been given the nod to try this out, as a task force was already in place.

Anoopkumar, a member of the task force, said this process is done first by conducting a blood test on a coronavirus positive patient who had turned negative.

“The positive patient after turning negative has to undergo two such tests to further clarify that it’s negative. Then after 14 days, the blood is tested to find the antibody presence. If it’s above a certain level and the person is above 55 kilograms in weight, then 800 ml of plasma is separated and it’s further split into 4 parts. Of this 200 ml is used to treat a patient whose condition is just turning serious,” said Anoopkumar.

The plasma that’s collected can be stored for many weeks.

Today, there are 80 people who tested positive for coronavirus and now negative.

The antibody blood-testing will be done at the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology in the state capital.

The total number of people who were positive and cured in Kerala as on date stands at 345.

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No Community Transmission in India Yet— WHO Regional Head https://easternmirrornagaland.com/no-community-transmission-in-india-yet-who-regional-head/ Wed, 08 Apr 2020 17:31:48 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=302248 New Delhi, April 8 (IANS): Given that many parts of India are witnessing large number of cases of Covid-19, experts have expressed their views on community transmission, but speaking exclusively to IANS, Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director of the World Health Organization’s South-East Asia region, said that currently cases in India have been traceable so there is no community transmission. Dr Khetrapal Singh spoke on variety of topics related to the novel coronavirus, India’s response of containing the disease, testing strategy and lockdown. Here are the excerpts of her interview with IANS: Question 1: What has WHO discovered about this new virus behaviour and character? What kind of trends or data are coming about this novel virus? Any findings or conclusion about its aetiology so far?Answer: Based on currently available data, the main driver of Covid-19 transmission is people who have symptoms. Preliminary data suggests that people may be more contagious around the time of symptom onset as compared to later on in the disease. Detailed exposure histories are being taken to better understand the pre-symptomatic phase of infection and how transmission may have occurred in these few instances. While there are some reports of laboratory-confirmed cases who are truly...

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New Delhi, April 8 (IANS): Given that many parts of India are witnessing large number of cases of Covid-19, experts have expressed their views on community transmission, but speaking exclusively to IANS, Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director of the World Health Organization’s South-East Asia region, said that currently cases in India have been traceable so there is no community transmission.

Dr Khetrapal Singh spoke on variety of topics related to the novel coronavirus, India’s response of containing the disease, testing strategy and lockdown. Here are the excerpts of her interview with IANS:

Question 1: What has WHO discovered about this new virus behaviour and character? What kind of trends or data are coming about this novel virus? Any findings or conclusion about its aetiology so far?
Answer: Based on currently available data, the main driver of Covid-19 transmission is people who have symptoms. Preliminary data suggests that people may be more contagious around the time of symptom onset as compared to later on in the disease. Detailed exposure histories are being taken to better understand the pre-symptomatic phase of infection and how transmission may have occurred in these few instances. While there are some reports of laboratory-confirmed cases who are truly asymptomatic, to date there has been no documented asymptomatic transmission. This does not exclude the possibility that it may occur. Transmission from an asymptomatic person is very rare with other coronaviruses, such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). Persons who are symptomatic spread viruses more readily through coughing or exhaling. WHO is regularly monitoring all emerging evidence about this critical topic. About the source, increasing evidence demonstrates the link between the Covid-19 and other similar known coronaviruses circulating in bats, and more specifically those of the Rhinolophus bat sub-species. At this stage, it is not possible to determine precisely how humans in China were initially infected with SARS-CoV-2. The route of transmission to humans at the start of this event remains unclear. The current most likely hypothesis is that an intermediary host animal has played a role in the transmission – this could be a domestic animal, a wild animal, or a domesticated wild animal and, as of yet, has not been identified. WHO continues to collaborate with experts, countries and other partners to identify gaps and research priorities for the control of Covid-19, caused by the SARS-CoV-2, including the identification of the source of SARS-CoV-2. Current information suggests that the virus can cause mild, flu-like symptoms as well as more severe disease. Patients have a range of symptoms: fever (83-98 per cent), cough (68 per cent) and shortness of breath (19-35 per cent). About 40 per cent of cases seem to have mild disease, 40 per cent of cases have moderate disease (defined as radiology-confirmed pneumonia), about 14 per cent appear to progress to severe disease, and some 5 per cent are critical. Risk factors for severe disease are older age and comorbidities. This is a new disease and our understanding is changing rapidly. WHO continues to analyze information on both current and any new cases, as this is critical to enhancing our understanding of severity.

Question 2: A post is doing rounds on social media, defining the time frame of survival of the virus on different kind of surfaces (like aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel) How true it is?
Answer: The virus that causes Covid-19 is mainly transmitted through droplets generated when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks. These droplets are too heavy to hang in the air. They quickly fall on floors or surfaces. You can be infected by breathing in the virus if you are within 1 meter of a person who has Covid-19, or by touching a contaminated surface and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth before washing your hands. Surfaces can be contaminated with the virus. Studies conducted on SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV indicate that coronaviruses can persist on different surfaces for up to a few days depending on a combination of parameters such as temperature, humidity and light. Thus, frequent hand washing and cleaning of surfaces has been always recommended by WHO.

Question 3: Has WHO done any finding on this SARS-CoV-2 relation, response or reaction with (High and Low) temperature?
Answer: There is no robust evidence yet to such hypotheses. It is important that people practice hand hygiene regularly with soap and water; clean surfaces regularly with disinfectant – for example kitchen benches and work desks; cover their cough and sneeze; take extra precautions to avoid crowded areas if you are over 60, or if you have an underlying condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer; if you are sick, stay at home, and eat and sleep separately from your family, use different utensils and cutlery to eat; and if you develop shortness of breath, call your doctor and seek care immediately.
Question 4: How far is the world still from finding therapeutic cure for
Covid-19?
Answer: No pharmaceutical products have yet been shown to be safe and effective for the treatment of Covid-19. However, a number of medicines have been suggested as potential investigational therapies, many of which are now being studied in clinical trials, including the Solidarity trial co-sponsored by WHO and participating countries. So far, 74 countries have either joined the Solidarity trial or are in the process of joining and more than 200 patients had been randomly assigned to one of the study arms. Each new patient who joins the trial gets us one step closer to knowing which drugs work. There are multiple randomized clinical trials investigating the safety and efficacy of anti-virals and steroids ongoing worldwide.

Question 5: Although health authorities have not said that it is a ‘community transmission’ stage in India. Do you think the same?
Answer: Community transmission in any country is confirmed when the source of infection is unclear. In other words, when transmission in a given area – is extensive, in multiple locations, without reported travel history to areas reporting community transmission and without epidemiological links to known cases. Currently cases in India have been traceable. However, whatever the stage, the key action points are – engage with people; find, isolate, test and treat and trace every contact; ready your hospitals; and protect and train health workers. That’s the only way to combat Covid19.

Question 6: Do you think India is conducting less tests even as WHO Director General said “testing testing and testing?
Answer: On testing, India’s response has been proportionate to the need and the transmission scenario of Covid-19. The country has, on an ongoing basis, been ramping up its capacities with currently 152 public sector laboratories and 49 accredited private lab chains testing all symptomatic individuals who have undertaken international travel in the last 14 days; all symptomatic contacts of laboratory confirmed cases; all symptomatic health care workers; all hospitalized patients with Severe Acute Respiratory Illness and asymptomatic direct and high-risk contacts of a confirmed case. Besides all influenza like cases in hotspot areas are being tested. India has been calibrating its testing strategy as per the changing situation, taking into account scope, need and capacity.

Question 7: Looking at the number of cases, do you think India is amid an outbreak? Or do see that the disease is still contained very well here? Do you think India has taken the decision of lockdown very late, despite early warning from WHO?
Answer: India has so far managed to keep cases relatively low by rolling out quick and aggressive response. India has an advantage as the country-initiated response early and had an opportunity to learn from other countries that are ahead in terms of cases and applying different strategies in responding to the ongoing pandemic. The most effective way to control an outbreak is to detect disease early, isolate, treat, trace contacts, and promote social distancing measures. A lockdown helps in conducting these well but is not the solution by itself in curbing the epidemic.

Question 8: Is India getting any help in procuring PPE from WHO funds? Or do you think it’s doing very well on its own?
Answer: India’s response is nationally funded. WHO has provided some PPEs and primers and probes from its stockpile, and is also facilitating supplies through the global pandemic supply chain. WHO’s work with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and state governments on various preparedness and response measures include strengthening surveillance and contact tracing; laboratory and research protocols; risk communications; hospital preparedness; training on infection prevention and control and cluster containment plan.

Question 9: How do you think India is responding to the evolving situation as compared to other countries in the South Asian region?
Answer: WHO has been recommending all countries to scale up emergency response mechanism to A1) engage with people, 2) Find, isolate, test and treat every case and trace every contact; 3) ready hospitals; and 4) protect and train health workers.India’s response to Covid-19 has been pre-emptive, pro-active and graded with high-level political commitment. India’s efforts, that are led by the highest political leadership, is very much in line with WHO recommended actions such as coordination, planning, and monitoring; community engagement; surveillance, rapid response teams and case investigation, points of entry, national laboratories; infection prevention and control; case management; and operational support and logistics. This needs to continue/be ensured at all levels.

Sfoorti Mishra can be contacted at sfoorti.m@ians.in

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Heartfulness helpline to cope with lockdown stress https://easternmirrornagaland.com/heartfulness-helpline-to-cope-with-lockdown-stress/ Wed, 01 Apr 2020 12:55:11 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=300652 Hyderabad, April 1 (IANS): The Heartfulness Institute with its global headquarters near here has set up a 24X7 helpline for citizens to deal with the stress due to coronavirus lockdown in the country. As the pandemic has created uncertainty, fear, panic and isolation among people, Heartfulness on Wednesday announced various initiatives to help them deal with the situation. The Helpline ‘Voice That Cares’ can be accessed by anyone by dialing the toll-free number 1800 121 Dhyana (3492). Several hundred Heartfulness trainers trained by their guide Daaji will respond to public calls and help alleviate emotional or mental distress of callers. “Empathy is known to be one of the strongest healers and the trainers are well versed to navigate the callers through the distress due to the ongoing lockdown,” the institute said. “There will be also be global ‘Lifecast’by Daaji, who will enunciate his thoughts on the situation and how to deal with it. It is scheduled at 5.30 pm on April 2. Daaji will follow up his talk with a meditation session. Pranahuti (life force), which is central to Heartfulness Meditation practice, will be transmitted by Daaji as part of the meditation and those who wish to take part in the...

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Hyderabad, April 1 (IANS): The Heartfulness Institute with its global headquarters near here has set up a 24X7 helpline for citizens to deal with the stress due to coronavirus lockdown in the country.

As the pandemic has created uncertainty, fear, panic and isolation among people, Heartfulness on Wednesday announced various initiatives to help them deal with the situation.

The Helpline ‘Voice That Cares’ can be accessed by anyone by dialing the toll-free number 1800 121 Dhyana (3492). Several hundred Heartfulness trainers trained by their guide Daaji will respond to public calls and help alleviate emotional or mental distress of callers.

“Empathy is known to be one of the strongest healers and the trainers are well versed to navigate the callers through the distress due to the ongoing lockdown,” the institute said.

“There will be also be global ‘Lifecast’by Daaji, who will enunciate his thoughts on the situation and how to deal with it. It is scheduled at 5.30 pm on April 2. Daaji will follow up his talk with a meditation session. Pranahuti (life force), which is central to Heartfulness Meditation practice, will be transmitted by Daaji as part of the meditation and those who wish to take part in the session should simply keep their eyes closed, sit in a comfortable posture silently without any external disturbance, focus on their heart and bring their attention to the divinity that exists in their heart,” it said.

It can be accessed at http://www.Facebook.com/practiceheartfulness and http://www.youtube.com/c/heartfulness

“There is clear need for all of us to understand the situation as it stands today, demystify it and see it as it should be seen. There is too much information and too many changes in a very short time. How does one see it in a larger context of one’s life and what steps are needed to strengthen one’s ability to handle their feelings and emotions and thereby creating a contagion of positive emotions to deal with the situation together,” Daaji said.

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Govt sets up national monitoring dashboard on COVID-19 grievances https://easternmirrornagaland.com/govt-sets-up-national-monitoring-dashboard-on-covid-19-grievances/ Wed, 01 Apr 2020 12:27:45 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=300646 New Delhi, April 1 (IANS): The government has set up a National Monitoring Dashboard where novel coronavirus or COVID-19 related grievances received in Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System with all ministries, departments, states and Union Territories are monitored on priority basis by a technical team. It aims to ensure timely redress of COVID-19 grievances. Directions have been issued to all ministries and departments to prioritize these grievances and provide redress in three days. The grievances monitored by a technical team of Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) which developed the dashboard and implemented it at https://darpg.gov.in. DARPG is the nodal agency of the Central government for administrative reforms as well as redress of public grievances relating to the states in general and those pertaining to Central Government agencies in particular. Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions Jitendra Singh on Wednesday launched the dashboard through video conferencing facility. The dashboard was developed by DARPG in pursuance of the recommendations of the 10 Empowered Group of Officers constituted under the Disaster Management Act 2005 on Public Grievances and Suggestions to ensure timely implementation of COVID 19 response activities. Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said: “It...

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New Delhi, April 1 (IANS): The government has set up a National Monitoring Dashboard where novel coronavirus or COVID-19 related grievances received in Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System with all ministries, departments, states and Union Territories are monitored on priority basis by a technical team.

It aims to ensure timely redress of COVID-19 grievances. Directions have been issued to all ministries and departments to prioritize these grievances and provide redress in three days.

The grievances monitored by a technical team of Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG) which developed the dashboard and implemented it at https://darpg.gov.in. DARPG is the nodal agency of the Central government for administrative reforms as well as redress of public grievances relating to the states in general and those pertaining to Central Government agencies in particular.

Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions Jitendra Singh on Wednesday launched the dashboard through video conferencing facility. The dashboard was developed by DARPG in pursuance of the recommendations of the 10 Empowered Group of Officers constituted under the Disaster Management Act 2005 on Public Grievances and Suggestions to ensure timely implementation of COVID 19 response activities.

Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said: “It is the endeavour of the Modi government to ensure timely redress of COVID 19 grievances and directions have been issued to all ministries and departments to prioritize these grievances and provide redressal in a period of three days.”

Singh said he had personally reviewed the status of 262 grievances of Central Government and 83 grievances of state governments received on day one, and directed officers in the DARPG to pursue with the ministries and state governments. On Day 1 of the launch, the dashboard received 43 grievances of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, 31 grievances of Ministry of External Affairs and 26 grievances of Ministry of Finance.

The nature of grievances related to quarantine facilities, lockdown not being adhered to complaints, essential supplies related complaints, examination related complaints, rescheduling of interest repayments on loans, evacuation requests from foreign countries.

The portal will be updated and monitored at senior levels in government on a daily basis. The Minister said that it was a feather in the department’s cap that within two days, the national monitor was operationalized and 62 citizens’ grievances were redressed.

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Big boost to online doctor consultation during lockdown https://easternmirrornagaland.com/big-boost-to-online-doctor-consultation-during-lockdown/ Wed, 01 Apr 2020 11:54:29 +0000 https://www.easternmirrornagaland.com/?p=300638 New Delhi, April 1 (IANS): The Union Health Ministry had on March 27 urged people to take advantage of telemedicine services during the ongoing lockdown. Since then, the online doctor consultation has shown a big boost of approximately 60 per cent. Lybrate, one such health and wellness app, said it has witnessed over 60% increase in doctor consultation on its platform in the backdrop of lockdown throughout the country on account of coronavirus crisis. “It is highly appreciable that people are staying indoors and turning to online doctor consultation platforms for their healthcare needs. People can consult doctors on the health and wellness app across specialties, letting hospitals attend more serious patients,” Saurabh Arora, Founder and CEO, of ALybrate told IANS. Similarly, another online telemedicine platform, mfine, has also seen the number of patients growing fourfold, and hundreds of queries from hospitals amid the lockdown. “Earlier there was a grey area around telemedicine. In the absence of policy, some healthcare professionals were apprehensive about telemedicine. These rules helped us a lot to clarify all doubts,” mfine cofounder Ashutosh Lawania told IANS. “Earlier we had questions from doctors whether there was a risk doing teleconsultation. Now we won’t have those questions.” The...

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New Delhi, April 1 (IANS): The Union Health Ministry had on March 27 urged people to take advantage of telemedicine services during the ongoing lockdown. Since then, the online doctor consultation has shown a big boost of approximately 60 per cent.

Lybrate, one such health and wellness app, said it has witnessed over 60% increase in doctor consultation on its platform in the backdrop of lockdown throughout the country on account of coronavirus crisis.

“It is highly appreciable that people are staying indoors and turning to online doctor consultation platforms for their healthcare needs. People can consult doctors on the health and wellness app across specialties, letting hospitals attend more serious patients,” Saurabh Arora, Founder and CEO, of ALybrate told IANS.

Similarly, another online telemedicine platform, mfine, has also seen the number of patients growing fourfold, and hundreds of queries from hospitals amid the lockdown.

“Earlier there was a grey area around telemedicine. In the absence of policy, some healthcare professionals were apprehensive about telemedicine. These rules helped us a lot to clarify all doubts,” mfine cofounder Ashutosh Lawania told IANS.

“Earlier we had questions from doctors whether there was a risk doing teleconsultation. Now we won’t have those questions.”

The Indian Medical Association has also hailed the idea of telemedicine suggested by the government. IMA president Dr. Rajan Sharma told IANS: “We are a body of over 3.5 lakh doctors and our nation is in crisis. We are currently providing free consultation over telephone to the patients on health issues such as diabetes, hypertension, patients of chemotherapy or long-term ailments.”

He said most of doctors are providing consultations and medications on charitable basis in various states.

“The IMA HQ has also started a 24X7 COVID helpline for the general public and now we are starting psychological helpline for the general public, doctors and healthcare professionals,” Sharma said.

In India, OPD services of hospitals have been suspended in attempt to break the chain of transmission of COVID-19.

As on Wednesday, 1,637 cases of coronavirus, including 1,466 active cases, and 38 casualties have been reported in India.

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