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Punjab approves Rs 380 crore for Covid third wave preparation

Amarinder also gave go-ahead for filling of 674 posts of General Duty Medical Officers, 283 of medical officers (Specialists), 2,000 staff nurses posts, along with 330 faculty posts in Patiala and Amritsar Medical Colleges.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh |
July 9, 2021 9:30:09 pm
punjab covid third wavePeople, flouting COVID-19 norms, visit a crowded market area amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, in Jalandhar, Sunday, June 27, 2021. (PTI Photo)

The Punjab government Friday approved a sum of Rs 380 crore that will be used to set up more oxygen plants and other necessary health infrastructure to deal with the possible third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The fund, approved by Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh during a virtual Covid review meeting, shall be spent on on PSA (Pressure Swing Adsorption) oxygen plants, cryogenic liquid medical oxygen tanks, and ambulances, among others. The fund has been approved for the Health and Medical Education departments.

Amarinder also gave go-ahead for filling of 674 posts of General Duty Medical Officers, 283 of medical officers (Specialists), 2,000 staff nurses posts, along with 330 faculty posts in Patiala and Amritsar Medical Colleges. He also asked the departments to send proposal for any additional posts needed to the Cabinet to ensure that all vacant posts are filled at the earliest.

The CM said funds have never been allowed to become a constraint in the state government’s response to Covid and they will continue to be made available even in the future, according to requirement. The state is ready for the third wave, with preparations being made for 25 per cent more patients than in the second wave, he added.

The CM directed the departments to ensure testing at minimum 40,000 a day, with smart testing to ensure timely information on any upsurge.

Appreciating the detailed surveillance strategy prepared by the health and medical education departments, in consultation with experts, for prevention and containment of the third wave, the chief minister said GIS-based surveillance and prevention tools will be used with an auto trigger mechanism for localised restrictions in the first instance.

Regional or state-wide restrictions will be unveiled in the second instance, if the need so arises, he said, adding that districts will be classified based on risk levels into three categories, enabling districts to implement restrictions for containment on a scientific basis.

The CM directed the officials that data cells in each district be activated for collection and analysis of data.

Chief Secretary Vini Mahajan informed the meeting that funds and oxygen plants have been provided as necessary to ensure that there is no shortage.

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