Kohima: Following a series of advisories issued by the government of Nagaland to contain the spread of coronavirus, a new advisory issued by chief secretary Temjen Toy “strongly advised” the people to maintain a detailed record of all places and contacts one has come across in the past 14 days.
The advisory issued on Tuesday said that one must maintain a “detailed record of the places/locations that one has visited/frequented, and the persons that one has come into contact with or has met during the last 14 days”.
It said that this was to “help the doctors of the department of health & family welfare, in swiftly moving for monitoring and isolation of all such people”. Meanwhile, the Nagaland Police, on Tuesday appealed all citizens of the state to maintain a record of the persons they come in contact with. Besides the appeal, the state police also shared a copy of a contact history table to show how to maintain a contact record in case of any eventuality.
Taking to twitter, it wrote “Nagaland Police appeals to everyone to maintain a record of all the people you come in contact with. This will help to quickly monitor and isolate those people, should the most unfortunate happen”.
Along with the tweet, it shared a copy of a contact history table to show how person(s) can self-maintain a contact record of people coming in contact with, on a daily basis.
This advisory comes after a positive case of COVID-19 was reported in the neighboring state of Manipur. Although blood samples in this case, were reportedly sent for a second test, the confirmation of COVID-19 in the first test has raised concerns over the contact history of the person.
What is contact tracing and why is it important?
As per the World Health Organization (WHO), contact tracing is defined as the identification and follow-up of persons who may have come into contact with an infected person. People in close contact with someone who is infected with a virus, are at higher risk of becoming infected, and of potentially further infecting others.
Therefore, closely watching these contacts after exposure to an infected person will help the contacts to get care and treatment, and will prevent further transmission of the virus. Accordingly, this monitoring process is called contact tracing, which can be broken down into 3 basic steps:
1. Contact identification: Once someone is confirmed as infected with a virus, contacts are identified by asking about the person’s activities and the activities and roles of the people around them since onset of illness. Contacts can be anyone who has been in contact with an infected person: family members, work colleagues, friends, or health care providers.
2. Contact listing: All persons considered to have contact with the infected person should be listed as contacts. Efforts should be made to identify every listed contact and to inform them of their contact status, what it means, the actions that will follow, and the importance of receiving early care if they develop symptoms. Contacts should also be provided with information about prevention of the disease. In some cases, quarantine or isolation is required for high risk contacts, either at home, or in hospital.
3. Contact follow-up: Regular follow-up should be conducted with all contacts to monitor for symptoms and test for signs of infection.