Mumbai: BMC starts COVID-19 survey but fears resistance from high-rises

Updated: 16 September, 2020 07:11 IST | Prajakta Kasale | Mumbai

It is putting together 10,000 volunteers with the aim of screening and collecting data of each citizen to stop the virus' spread.

A BMC team of doctors and health workers screen residents of Manshi Apartment for COVID-19 symptoms, at Newmill Road, Kurla, on Tuesday. Pics/Sayyed Sameer Abedi
A BMC team of doctors and health workers screen residents of Manshi Apartment for COVID-19 symptoms, at Newmill Road, Kurla, on Tuesday. Pics/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

As COVID-19 cases continue to surge in Mumbai, the state government launched the My Family My Responsibility campaign on Tuesday. It is putting together 10,000 volunteers with the aim of screening and collecting data of each citizen to stop the virus' spread. 

The BMC is gearing up to fully launch the 'My Family My Responsibility' campaign this week, but there is the fear of resistance from residents of high-rises, who are not willing to get screened for COVID-19 by outsiders. Still, civic officials and local corporators are ensuring that everyone participates in the mass screening and health data collection.

10,000 volunteers

The survey started in some wards on Tuesday, and will be launched fully in the next two days. The appointment of around 10,000 volunteers from across the city is underway, and 5,000 teams with two volunteers and one civic health department worker each will conduct the survey. They will go door-to-door, collecting information about the family members, senior citizens, co-morbidities, and also check everyone's temperature and oxygen levels. The campaign will also provide referral treatment to people with co-morbidities such as diabetes, heart/kidney disease, obesity, etc. Volunteers will meet each family twice; once from September 15 to October 10 and again from October 12 to October 14.

Civic doctors and health workers screen residents of Manshi Apartment for COVID-19 symptoms in Kurla, on Tuesday
Civic doctors and health workers screen residents of Manshi Apartment for COVID-19 symptoms in Kurla, on Tuesday

Concerned about high-rises

BMC's main concern is opposition from high-rises. "Most buildings in our area are taking precautions like thermal checking of outsiders, checking oxygen levels, and have sanitiser and soap at the entrance. We also sanitise lifts every alternate day," said Aditi Jain, president of Cuffe Parade Residential Association. "Many residents are not comfortable about being examined by outsiders, fearing contracting COVID-19. Maybe we, in the society, can collect the data and hand it over to the BMC."

'We can give info to BMC'

Residents of Vishwadeep Heights Complex, Kandivli West, are also against participating in the survey, saying they follow all preacutionary measures. "We don't think we need any survey. Besides, people are scared about getting a positive COVDI-19 report without symptoms. We can give information about our members to the BMC if they want," said Nilesh Vyas, committee member of the complex.

Manish Valanju, assistant commissioner of L ward, comprising Kurla and a part of Chembur, said they were "facing resistance for antigen testing as well. But local corporators, MLAs and volunteers from the locality will help convince residents."

Also Read: No shortage of medical oxygen for COVID-19 patients: Health Ministry

Positive response from slums

Rajul Patel, corporator from Jogeshwari, said the response in the slums was positive. "We started from Ganesh Nagar today and people came forward willingly. The issue will be in the high-rises, even though they have more cases."

Survey is important

"The campaign is very important for the city. There will be some resistance, but we have to take authentic information from citizens, as it will help tackle the pandemic," said Prashant Gaikwad, assistant commissioner of D Ward, on Tuesday.

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First Published: 16 September, 2020 07:07 IST

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