GUWAHATI, Dec 29 - The State government and National Health Mission, Assam have spent Rs 1,032.49 crore for various expenses related to COVID-19 in Assam so far.
In a written reply, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma today informed the State Assembly that an amount of Rs 513.61 crore has been released to various districts for upgrade of existing hospitals, maintaining screening and quarantine centres, including institutional and home stay, ensuring home quarantine, etc.
Also, Rs 4.15 crore have been released to various medical colleges for expenditures related to COVID-19 management.
The NHM has released Rs 172 crore for incurring various expenditures on COVID-19 related testing, including those in private labs, and for procuring life-saving drugs and other personnel protection equipment Rs 76.20 crore has been spent. For procuring various infrastructural equipment like ventilators, ICU beds, etc., an amount of Rs 47 crore has been spent.
On transportation of both patients and stranded people, the State government has incurred an expenditure of Rs 44 crore and Rs 3.60 crore has been spent on information education campaign activities related to the pandemic. An amount of Rs 7.03 crore has been spent on engagement of additional human resources, training and quarantine stay of frontline workers, while Rs 2.11 crore has been spent on administrative expenses.
The NHM has also released Rs 160.88 crore as direct benefit transfer or financial assistance to the needy people, including those stranded abroad during the lockdown.
The Health Minister also informed that though the COVID Death Audit Board has identified 1,037 deaths due to the novel coronavirus till December 27, a total of 1,357 people had died with COVID-19 during that period. The others had various co-morbidities and so it cannot be said that they died due to COVID.
He further informed that 2,781 cleaners were engaged on temporary basis in the quarantine centres across the State. These cleaners will get priority in further recruitments to be conducted by the health department and NHM.