30 November, 2020

From Worst To A Role Model, How Bhilwara Turned The Corner In War Against Coronavirus

The Bhilwara model is food for thought for the Union government. In the 1,910 villages in the district, panchayats, panchayat samitis and local SDMs and BDOs were involved in tackling COVID-19

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From Worst To A Role Model, How Bhilwara Turned The Corner In War Against Coronavirus

Ruthless containment’ has become a buzzword ever since the ‘Bhilwara model’ darted into the limelight. Bhilwara, 240 km from Jaipur and famous for its textiles, went from being the worst-affected district in Rajasthan to a paradigm in managing COVID-19.

As cases spike elsewhere in the country, nobody in Bhilwara has tested positive since March 30. On March 19, when six doctors and a medical staffer tested positive for coronavirus, the single-minded determination of district magistrate Rajendra Bhatt led to the imposition of an immediate, complete clampdown. He had the situation under control in just over 10 days.

“The chief minister (Ashok Gehlot) gave me a free hand. The first thing I did was isolate Bhilwara by sealing its borders with other districts,” Bhatt tells Outlook. Explaining the model, he says, “It comprises six basic but crucial steps—isolate the district, map hotspots, door-to-door screening, aggressive contact tracing, ramp up quarantine and isolation wards, and put in place a monitoring mechanism for...



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