On Wednesday, Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation (BMC) area reported more than 1,900 active cases of Covid but the number of micro-containment zones in Salt Lake, as mentioned in the list brought out by the health department on Tuesday, was merely 10. The BMC area has 14 in all. There is none in an extensive area like Rajarhat.
Last week, the number of micro-containment zones across the three sectors of Salt Lake was six but even then, questions are being raised about the disproportionately low number of such zones given the exponential rise in cases.
A micro-containment zone is essentially a house with “at least three-four Covid patients,” a BMC official said. The municipal corporation, along with the Bidhannagar Commissionerate, places traffic guardrails around such houses and pastes notices on their boundary walls and gates so as to warn outsiders about entering the premises.
According to a senior official of the corporation’s health department, Salt Lake’s Sector I has the highest number of micro-containment zones now.
“At least nine houses in this sector have been demarcated as micro-containment zones. They are mainly in BF, CB and EC blocks. We have detected a cluster pattern of the disease here,” the official said.
In Sector II, two houses in AK Block had been red-flagged and in Sector III five houses, across GD, FD, HA and IB blocks had been labelled micro-containment zones.
However, several residents as well as officials of the health department have expressed concern that the rapid rise in the number of Covid cases in the township was not reflecting in the number of micro-containment zones being set up.
Officials testing positive
When questioned about the issue, the health official said there was a time lag between a patient testing positive and his report being sent from private laboratories to the health department.
“This is because many healthcare professionals and technicians are themselves contracting the virus at an alarming rate. There is shortage of manpower,” he explained.
“At our end too, the data collected is taking longer to collate as most of our employees are down with Covid themselves,” the official said.
Would declaring more houses as micro containment zones help contain Covid? Write to The Telegraph Salt Lake, 6 Prafulla Sarkar Street, Calcutta 700001 or email to email@example.com