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ICMR recommends use of hydroxychloroquine to treat Coronavirus:

The national task force for COVID-19, constituted by the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR), has recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 for a high-risk population. 

ICMR directed that the hydroxy-chloroquine should be given to high-risk population asymptomatic healthcare workers. The medication can be used to treat the suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19 and asymptomatic household contacts of laboratory-confirmed cases. The Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) approved the usage of hydroxychloroquine for restricted use in emergency situations.


Hydroxychloroquine is generally used to treat malaria infections. The medication can be used with other medications to treat particular auto-immune diseases when other medications cannot be used for the treatment.

Hydroxy-chloroquine will be effective against Coronavirus in laboratory studies and in-vivo studies. The use in prophylaxis is derived from the available evidence of benefit as treatment and supported by preclinical data. Also, the drug should be given only on the prescription of a registered medical practitioner. 

The usage of the drug, in the initial days, has been proven efficient by the United States. Italy and South Korea have used the drug to treat COVID-19. 

Indian Railways prepares train coaches for isolation units for COVID-19 patients:

The Indian Railways have prepared a prototype of train coaches that can be used as isolation units for COVID-19 patients. The move is to face challenges that might be caused due to the outbreak of Coronavirus.


♦ Initially, 10 coaches will be converted into isolation units for those affected by COVID- 19. There are 17 zones in Indian Railways. 

♦ The isolation coaches will be used all across the country and will remain in railway premises. 

♦ The prototype has been developed by Northern Railway. 

♦ It is expected that other zones will give their outputs in 3-4 days. Indian Railways is yet to finalize a particular design in this regard.

♦ For the isolation cabin, middle berth from one side and all the three berths have been removed in front of the patient berth.

♦ Air curtains in each compartment has been provided.

♦ Each compartment is provided with four bottle holders and a 220-volt electric point for medical instruments.

♦ The aisle areas of the bathrooms have been modified to prepare the isolation coaches. A hand shower, one bucket, and a mug is placed in each bathroom. 

♦ With these provisions, there are 10 isolation wards in each coach.

Indian Railways is to make more designs of the isolation coaches as a measure to combat COVID-19.

Centre announces free ATM withdrawals for 3 months:

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that debit cardholders could withdraw cash from any other bank`s ATM free of charge for the next three months. 


♦ There will not be any minimum balance requirement fee in the bank accounts. The announcement comes as lockdown, and the curfew is in place in many parts of India amid coronavirus pandemic.

♦ Centre has also waived minimum bank charges for savings bank accounts.

♦ Finance Ministry is also working on an economic package that will be announced soon in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.







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