Central teams comprising of public health specialists and clinicians will be sent to Maharashtra, Punjab and Chhattisgarh in view of the high number of coronavirus cases and deaths in these states, the prime minister’s office informed in a release on Sunday.

The decision was taken in a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday evening. The meeting was attended by top officials, including those from the health ministry, NITI Aayog and expert group on vaccination.

The Centre also announced a special campaign designed on the importance of Covid-appropriate behaviour that will be conducted between April 6 and April 14, the release stated.

In a presentation to the prime minister, officials said that 10 states were contributing to more than 91% of cases and deaths due to the virus. Maharashtra alone accounted for 57% of total cases in the country in the last 14 days and 47% of deaths during the same period, the presentation showed. It added that Punjab and Chhattisgarh reported around 4.5% of the cases each in the last 14 days, but contributed to an alarming 16.3% and 7% of the deaths, respectively.

As far as vaccination is concerned, a presentation detailed the coverage in various groups with respect to other countries and analysis of performance of states. Research and development of vaccines were also discussed along with the production capacity of existing manufacturers and the capacity of vaccines that are under trials.

The prime minister highlighted the need to ensure availability of beds, oxygen, ventilators, testing facilities and timely hospitalisation. He also pointed out the need to ensure clinical management protocols be followed across all hospitals as well as for those in home care.