1.Any hotspot district with more than 15 cases would be treated as a district witnessing outbreak.

  • Why this classification was necessary? What are its implications?
  • How are the districts divided?
  • How are Containment zones and epicenters demarcated?

UPSC can list these Questions under

GS paper 2 (Issues related to health, education and Human Resources.)

What is the context about?

  • The government has decided to divide all districts across the country into hotspots, non-hotspots and green zones.
  • The health and family welfare ministry has identified 170 hotspot districts, 207 non-hotspot districts reporting cases and 359 green zone districts not reporting any cases across the country.
  • These numbers will increase or decrease based on fresh cases of novel coronavirus infection.

Why this classification was necessary? What are its implications?

  • This will help in managing the Covid-19 pandemic as well as partial opening up of economic activities during the extended period of the nationwide lockdown.
  • This would help in management of hotspots and spread of pandemic.

How are the districts divided?

  • The health ministry used two criteria to classify the districts as hotspots — the absolute number of cases and the speed of growth in cases.
  • The technical definition followed to classify the districts is any district reporting more than six cases would be classified as hotspot district or red zone.
  • Any hotspot district with more than 15 cases would be treated as a district witnessing outbreak.

How are Containment zones and epicenters demarcated?

  • A house with positive cases or a cluster with positive cases is marked as the epicentre of the containment zone. A radius of 0.5 km is taken and the area around it is cordoned off with only essential services available.
  • Also, a buffer zone is marked where people with severe and acute respiratory illnesses (SARI) are checked and monitored.
  • Containment zones are created to map the local transmission of the disease and prevent the contagion from spreading.