Press Release: 08-04-2020

Kerala Government sets up Covid Helpdesks for Pravasi Malayalis
Thiruvananthapuram, April 08: The Kerala Government has set up five COVID Helpdesks for the expatriate Malayalee community. Announcing this today, Chief Minister, Shri Pinarayi Vijayan said, “In order to address the concerns and issues faced by the non-resident Keralites, we have set up five dedicated COVID Helpdesks in countries where we have a substantial number of Pravasi Malayalis. The helpdesks started by Norka Roots will be managed locally by persons and voluntary organisations active among Non-Resident Keralites. We have requested the Indian Ambassadors in these places to cooperate with these helpdesks.” The details about these helpdesks are available on the Norka Roots website https://norkaroots.org/web/guest/covid-services.
The Chief Minister also informed that online medical services would be made available to the non-resident Keralites through the Norka Roots website. Pravasi Malayalis can consult prominent doctors in Kerala by audio or video calls through the website, with prior registration. The services of various speciality doctors will be available from 2 pm to 6 pm IST.

Currently, registration for the Norka Pravasi Id card is only available for the Malayali expatriates residing or working abroad for a period of not less than six months. “Now students from Kerala studying abroad can also avail this facility. The overseas student registration service would enable them to get Insurance benefits and discounts on flight tickets. This registration will be mandatory for all students presently studying abroad as well as for those going abroad, from now on”, the CM added.

The Pravasi Id card is a multi-purpose photo identity card that entitles every non-resident Keralite to avail all services and facilities offered by Norka Root. The card comes with an add-on Personal Accident Insurance coverage. Two prominent airlines are offering a discount on the base fare for air tickets booked by Norka Id Card holders.


Kerala reports nine new Coronavirus cases today, 13 recoveries; total 259 patients under treatment

Thiruvananthapuram, April 08: Kerala today reported nine fresh cases of the COVID-19 infection – four from Kannur District, two from Alappuzha district, and one each from Pathanamthitta, Thrissur and Kasargod districts. Four of the new cases are in persons who returned from overseas, two from Nizamuddin and the remaining three got the infection from local contact.
The test results of 13 patients came negative today. Three each in Thiruvananthapuram and Thrissur districts, two each from Idukki, Kozhikode and Wayanad districts and one from Kannur district are those who were cured of the disease.

Till date, there are 345 confirmed Coronavirus cases in the State with 259 patients currently under treatment in hospitals across Kerala.

The total number of people under observation in Kerala has further dropped down. As on today, 1,40,474 people are under observation 1,39,725 at homes and 749 at hospitals. 169 people were admitted to hospitals today. So far 11,986 samples have been sent for testing and 10,906 results have come negative.

These statistics were announced by the Chief Minister, Shri Pinarayi Vijayan during his daily briefing on the Coronavirus situation in the State. He also informed that so far 212 people who have returned to Kerala from Nizamuddin have been identified and the infection has been confirmed in 15 of them.

273 new posts have been approved by the Cabinet for the 300 bedded Kasargod Medical College hospital with 24 hours casualty, OP and IP services. Half of the posts will be appointed soon on a priority basis and the rest, as and when the hospital is fully functional. The CM also informed that the State would get 20,000 testing kits from ICMR. There will be no shortage of testing kits in Kerala.

Government to use Ayurveda to mitigate Covid-19 spread
The Kerala Government today decided to use Ayurveda in their fight against Coronavirus. “We are taking all possible steps to contain the spread of Covid-19 in the State. We have decided to use Ayurveda in mitigating this infection. People would be classified into seven categories based on the possible spread of the virus and they would be advised ayurvedic treatment as per this classification”, the Chief Minister said.

Sukhayusham for those over 60 years of age and Swasthyam project which envisages light exercise for the benefit of all are some of the programmes being planned under this initiative. The CM also announced that Ayur Raksha clinics will be started at Ayurveda dispensaries and hospitals. Those who have recovered from the infection will be given treatment to nurse them back to good health. Niramaya, an online portal connecting all Government Ayurveda facilities in the State will be rolled out soon.

Optical Shops to open
In addition to the list of shops allowed to open announced earlier, Optical shops in Kerala will be allowed to open once in a week. This would benefit those who are using spectacles and need to repair them or get new ones.