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Second wave of corona may come prior to December 15, Wear mask and stay alert : Health Minister Rajasthan

India News Front

Jaipur, November 6.

The corona curve is flattening but people should not become careless, as second wave is expected in winters.

Health Minister Dr Raghu Sharma said, “Experts believe that the second wave may come prior to December 15th this year, so people have to be very cautious, wear masks, maintain social distance and wash hands frequently to keep themselves safe.”

He said that according to the experts, there will be an increase in the cases of seasonal diseases, swine flu, dengue, cold and cough, pollution etc in winters, which is going to get severe and if the pollution levels rises, corona cases will certainly surge. “If people wear mask and maintain distance for a month, then corona chain can be broken,” the Health Minister said.

Dr Sharma said according to the experts, masks are better than vaccine as effect of vaccine will not be more than 60%, but by wearing masks regularly, the chances of infection can be brought down by 90%.

He said that Chief Minister Shri Ashok Gehlot launched ‘Public Movement Against Corona’ campaign on October 2nd in the entire State, with the nodal officer as the district collector. NGOs, NCC, Scout and Guides, teachers together with the Local Self Government are distributing masks and raising awareness about this deadly virus.

The campaign has been extended upto November 30 and people are being told about the importance of wearing masks. Apart from this, ‘No Mask, No Entry’ campaign is also becoming successful, as not only government offices, but private offices, shops, commercial establishments and others are abiding by this and people are not allowed to enter until they wear a mask.

The Health Minister said that USA, UK and other western countries are witnessing the second and third waves of COVID-19 and cases have increased more than twice and thrice compared to the first phase. He said, “People in Rajasthan will have to develop the habit of wearing masks. There are many benefits of wearing masks, as it reduces the risk of several serious diseases. It has been aimed to eliminate tuberculosis by 2025 as wearing masks can control the cases of tuberculosis, asthma, allergy and other infectious diseases. Masks play an important role in prevention of silicosis and will prove effective.”

Dr Sharma said that Rajasthan under the leadership of Chief Minister Shri Gehlot has managed the COVID-19 pandemic well with recovery rate being above 90% and the fatality rate being less than 1%. The testing facilities are available at 22 government and 16 private labs and hospitals where authentic RT-PCR tests are being done. The State has developed the infrastructure to conduct more than 52,000 tests per day. Two testing labs are about to be opened soon at Pratapgarh district hospital and at Nathdwara sub-district hospital and testing facilities will be started at all the district headquarters and district hospitals by the end of November.

The Health Minister said that the cases of corona in the State are seeing a dip but the after effects of corona are very serious as the virus is affecting brain, heart, kidneys, lungs and pancreas after recovery. Many casualties have taken place after turning COVID negative. The State Government has opened Post COVID Clinics in the entire State, wherein the patients can consult doctors for any tests and complications after recovering from corona for a month.

Dr Sharma said, “Rajasthan is ready if a second wave of corona comes. We have a lot of ICU beds, oxygen supported beds and general beds in the State. At the time when cases were at peak, the demand for oxygen cylinders was almost 13,000 per day but now has come down to 6000-7000 oxygen cylinders per day.”

The officers have been directed to make 25,000 oxygen cylinders available per day for the second wave. Apart from this, oxygen generation plants are being set up at district hospitals, sub-district hospitals and hospitals attached to medical colleges in the state, so that corona infected patients do not face lack of oxygen for their treatment. Liquid oxygen plants are also being set up at hospitals attached to medical colleges and even pipeline system is being developed, he added.

In regard to manpower, he said that during the corona period, 765 doctors along with 12500 ANMs and GNMs were recruited and the process of recruiting 2000 doctors is in progress. The health department has been recruiting radiographers, lab technicians, ECG technicians and others.

The State Government is vigilant in regard to corona and taking decisions based on the suggestions given the team of doctors. So far, more than 150 video conferences have been organised by the Chief Minister in regard to corona.

The Health Minister once again appealed to all people of Rajasthan to remain alert and cautious during the upcoming festivals and winter season by taking proper precautions. He asked people to wear mask while stepping out of the house and keep distance of six feet. INF