New Delhi: Data on Covid-19 fatalities amongst healthcare workers is not maintained at the Central level by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare as health is a state subject, parliament was told on Tuesday.
On Monday, the Union Labour Ministry had informed the Lok Sabha in a written reply that the central government has no provision for compensation or economic assistance to the families of migrant workers who died on the journey back to their hometowns during the over 60-day lockdown across the country amid the Covid-19 crisis
On Tuesday, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, told the Rajya Sabha, in a written reply, also said: "However, the database of those seeking relief under the 'Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Insurance Package' is maintained at the national level."
The minister listed 155 health workers who died due to Covid-19 as per the PMGKP.
According to the data, relief was sought for 64 doctors, 32 Auxiliary Nursing Midwifery and Multi-Purpose Health Worker, 14 ASHA workers and 45 others under the scheme.
Choubey also said that states were asked to constitute Infection Prevention and Control committees, and hospitals were directed to identify a nodal officer who will monitor the healthcare workers and review their exposure status.
"High risk exposures are placed under quarantine for seven days. Based on their exposure and clinical profile of such doctors, nursing officers and other health workers, a decision shall be taken by the Nodal Officer and Head of the Department (or his appointed Sub-committee) for a further period of one week."
He said that the healthcare workers were also provided with hydroxychloroquine for prophylaxis and prevention of infection. N-95 masks and triple- and double-ply masks were brought under price control.
Export of PPEs, N95 masks, triple- and double-ply medical masks, goggles and visors were banned till such time the country became self-reliant.
A Rs 15,000 crore ($2 billion) package under "India Covid-19 Emergency Response and Health System Preparedness Package" was approved by the Cabinet on April 22, 2020.
The funds and commodities are allocated to the states under various components including emergency Covid-19 response. The states were supported with 9.81 Crore tablets of hydroxychloroquine and 28,476 ventilators were supplied.
"In initial part of the pandemic, there were concerns on non-availability of protective gear. However, with the Government of India stepping in to enhance capacity and allocating PPE to states as per need, this concern was addressed. States were provided with 3.05 crore N-95 masks and 1.2 crore PPE kits," the minister added.