Indian Institute of Public Health, Shillong (IIPHS)

The Commissioner & Secretary Health & Family Welfare, Government of Meghalaya (GoM) requested the Indian Institute of Public Health Shillong to provide technical support during the COVID crisis to the Dept of Health, GoM. Thus our faculty and research teams have been contributing to the Meghalaya State’s COVID preparations. Although there were no cases reported in Meghalaya until 13 April, 2020, the health department had geared up planning and preparation on several fronts including general measures and health system preparedness. IIPH-Shillong faculty and research team members have been supporting the state in data analysis, assessment of helath system preparedness, mathematical modelling and projections, research and publication for improving general awareness about Covid -19. Our faculty are also members on state level expert committees and task forces – working group (Ministry of Ayush).


Data analysis: Our team have been extending support to the States’ IDSP team in analyzing data and in assessing significance of higher numbers of fever and or respiratory infections observed in some districts in Meghalaya during the past weeks. 

Health system preparedness: In assessing preparedness of hospitals in the public sector and private sector for covid preparedness, in preparing checklists and surveys (lead by epidemiologist Badondor Shylla). Some of our MPH students are also helping in the management of the newly established Corona Care Centers.

Mathematical modelling: We have also developed predictive models for health system planning in collaboration with (lead by Dr Rajiv Sarkar, Asst Professor) in collaboration with researchers from the Indian Statistical Institute and IIT Rourkee. The Dept of Health, GoM has used these figures for their Covid planning and preparations.

Research: on the request of the Govt we have developed a survey questionnaire on  “A cross sectional study to assess knowledge, attitude and practices towards hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette and community quarantine in Meghalaya”, however the roll out of the survey was hampered by the lockdown announcement.

Membership to Expert Committees /Task force/working groups

  • Prof Sandra Albert is a member of the Working group on Epidemiology Survey and Documentation constituted by the Interdisciplinary AYUSH Research and Development Task Force on Covid-19. Notification No. A.17020/1/2020-E.1 of Ministry of AYUSH
  • Dr Rajiv Sarkar, Badondor Shylla and Uniqueky Mawrie are members of the technical support group of the State response team for Covid-19, GoM
  • Prof Sandra Albert is a member of the Medical Expert Committee on Covid-19 constituted by the Govt of Meghalaya

Publications on Covid 19: a series of articles and bulletins on Covid were published in the Shillong Times newspaper (Established 1945); one the oldest and widely read newspapers in the northeast region of India. This was done to improve general awareness, for education and as a means to reduce the general panic that was griping the populace.

List of publications in the Shillong Times March-April 2020

Novel Corona virus Covid-19 infection: A pragmatic approach
by Dr Sandra Albert

Covid-19 Bulletin
Dr Sandra Albert and Dr Glenn Kharkongor

Stages and life span of a pandemic: India and the world
Dr Sandra Albert and Dr Glenn Kharkongor

Testing for Covid-19 during stage 3
By Sandra Albert and Glenn Kharkongor

Vaccines and medicines for COVID-19
By Sandra Albert and Glenn Kharkongor

Effects of public health measures for COVID-19
Scenarios and strategy building for Meghalaya
By Sandra Albert and Glenn Kharkongor

Science must drive the Covid-19 decision making
By Sandra Albert and Glenn Kharkongor

TB remains top infectious killer worldwide
By Sandra Albert

March 31, 2020
Now is the time to prepare for the post-lockdown phase
By Sandra Albert and Glenn Kharkongor

April 8, 2020
Meghalaya’s Covid strategy is on the right track
By Sandra Albert and Glenn Kharkongor