Current Affairs – August, 2020

Pathogens listed Critical by World Health Organization found in River Yamuna

The World Health Organization, 2017 had published its first list of antibiotic resistant priority pathogens that pose the greatest threat to human lives. These critical group and certain multi-drug resistant bacteria are found in River Yamuna according to a group of researchers from IIT Delhi.

Highlights

The study conducted by the researchers says that sewage is the main source of their entry into the river. The researcher team studies 20 major sewer drains of the river over two seasons at five major locations of Delhi.

The researchers found Beta-lactamases-Enzymes that help bacteria stay resistant to commonly used antibiotics.

About the Study

The study says that poor sewage collection and lack of sewage treatment plants and lack of connectivity between the drain are the main reasons for the deadly bacteria to develop in the river. There is a need for adequate infrastructure for sewage management in the region.

Currently, the existing treatment plants work on organic pollutants such as nitrogen, carbon and phosphorous. However, there is an emerging need to upgrade the sewage treatment plants in the country.

The study says that the resistance genes present in the river were β-lactamases genes and carbapenemadse. There are possibilities for rapid proliferation of different antibiotic resistant genes through horizontal gene transfer.

WHO list of “Priority Pathogens”

The list was published by World Health Organization in 2017. The list contains antibiotic resistant pathogens for which drugs are urgently needed. The list particularly highlights the Gram-negative bacteria that are resistant to multiple antibiotics.

The list is divided into three categories such as high, medium and critical priority.

The mist critical group include multi drug resistant bacteria such as Pseudomonas, Acinetobacter and other Enterobacteriaceae such as E.coli, Klebsiella, Serratia and Proteus.

The second and third tiers in the list are of medium and high priority categories respectively. They cause common diseases such as food poisoning, gonorrhoea.

eSanjeevani Medicine Platform: 1.5 lakh Online Consultations provided

The web based comprehensive Telemedicine solution eSanjeevani has so far provided 1.58 lakh online consultations according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Highlights

The online platform was operationalised in more than 23 states. It covers more than 75% of population in the country. There are two types of teleconsultation under the platform. They are as follows

  • eSanjeevani (doctor-to-doctor)
  • Patient-to-doctor (eSanjeevani OPD)

About eSanjeevani

The eSanjeevani is implemented under Ayushman Bharat health initiative. The scheme aims to connect all the 1.5 lakh health and wellness centre established under Ayushman Bharat. So far, 12,000 health professionals have been provided training through 3,000 of these centres. Around 250 specialists are available on daily basis on the platform. However, the service is restricted only to Android App users.

Key Features

The main feature of the platform is that it uses MIS-based applications. It is designed for users to choose varied specialties such as tele-cardiology, tele-ophthalmology, etc. It also includes Comprehensive Electronic Medical Record, video conferencing, tele-consultation. It complies with international standards such as

  • TWAIN (Technology without an Interesting Name)
  • DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communication in Medicine)

Ayushman Bharat

The scheme was launched in 2018 by PM Modi. The scheme aims to provide free insurance coverage of up to Rs 5 lakhs per family per year. The scheme is meant only for the poor. Based on the Socio-Economic Caste Census data, around 74 crores of beneficiary families have been identified.

Background

India needs to focus more on health sector for the following reasons

  • According to the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO), about 86% of rural households and 82% of urban households do not have access to health cares.
  • Around 19% of urban households and 24% of rural households meet their health care needs through borrowing
  • Around 17% of population in the country spend minimum of 1/10th of their household budget to avail health services.

COVID-19

The Government of India had announced the beneficiaries of Ayushman Bharat can avail free COVID-19 tests in any of the Government authorised laboratories.