How Kerala flattened the covid curve?

Public health infrastructure:
Kerala has at least two primary health centers for every three villages, which is one every 3.95 kilometers against the national average of 7.3km.

Efficient contact tracing:
Through contact tracing, the team was able to track nearly 98% of all primary and secondary contacts, as reported for one district.

Early calamity declaration:
Kerala government declared the coronavirus epidemic a “state calamity” after a third case was confirmed.

Monitoring:
A control room was opened, with 18 expert groups tasked to oversee departments such as home quarantine, contact tracing, isolation, logistics, training of medical staffers and so on. They met twice a day, with none less than the health minister personally. On the ground, a public health official and a panchayat president paired themselves to lead monitoring teams in every village.

Multiple call centers:
Some for the public to clear any doubts, and others to keep a tab on the mental health of those who are home quarantined.

Curb on fake news:
A media monitoring team was set up which scouted fake news. Three people were arrested for spreading fake news.

Quarantine duration:
Initially, 14-days, extended to 28-day self-quarantine.

History: Nipah and respiratory infections

  • Kerala is known to have contained some deadly viruses like Nipah and Zica in the past.
  • The Nipah virus outbreak in 2018 had killed 17 people in Kerala. In 2019, when the virus showed up again, a protocol was already in place to respond to the outbreak. No deaths were reported this time.
  • Kerala had almost six million cases of acute respiratory infections in 2016.

Prisons manufacturing masks:
Prisons in 7 districts started the production of re-usable cotton masks.

Vedang R. Vatsa

IT & Management Consultant