August 23, 2021 7:38:00 pm
Two days after the Covid-19 test positivity rate (TPR) in Kerala touched 17 per cent, state health minister Veena George Monday said that people need to remain vigilant in the next four weeks as the threat of a third wave looms large.
An emergency review meeting of the health department to take stock of the prevailing situation will be held Tuesday morning.
The minister said the government was committed to protecting both lives and livelihoods and a lockdown cannot be imposed at all times. Overcrowding was reported from many places after restrictions were relaxed during the Onam season, she said.
“The highly transmissible Delta variant is a threat in many places. There’s also the threat of a third wave. Hence, when institutions and offices reopen after the Onam holiday, everyone should remain vigilant,” she said.
George said the government has prepared a total of 744 beds for children, including 490 pediatric beds with oxygen facility, 158 HDU beds and 96 ICU beds. To ensure medical oxygen requirements are met during a likely third wave, the government, she said, is building 33 oxygen generation units, out of which nine are already active.
While the process of vaccination in the state is on, the minister said those who took both doses of the vaccine should not drop their guard in terms of adhering to safety protocols. Studies have indicated that the Delta variant of the virus spreads fast even through vaccinated individuals, she pointed out.
Kerala reported 13,383 new cases and 21,942 recoveries Monday, with the TPR at 15.63%. The number of new infections, which hovered above the 20,000-mark last week, has come down Monday due to lesser tests being conducted due to Onam festivities over the weekend.
A total of 1.54 lakh persons, the highest in the country, are currently under treatment in the state.
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