Mumbai: Despite of COVID-19 cases declining in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray cautioned there was no room for showing satisfaction. In an address to the state on Wednesday, Thackeray said that the government is preparing to deal with a third wave of the novel coronavirus.
In his address, he stated that though some districts have shown a slow decline in new cases, some others are still showing an upward graph but the number of patients under treatment has dropped from what it was in April-end.
Thackeray also said that he has directed officials to work in action to ramp up the production of liquid medical oxygen, used in treating severe COVID-19 patients, ahead of the third wave of the infection hitting Maharashtra, the worst coronavirus-affected state in India.
"We are preparing for the third wave of the infection,” Thackeray said on Wednesday. The CM stated that the people of the state, where lockdown-like restrictions are imposed to restrict the further spread of the infection should not become satisfied just because the cases are decreasing.
“Though cases are going down in some districts of the state, we need to be ready for the third wave of the infection. The state task force on COVID-19 is currently involved in guiding family doctors in district and talukas about treatment protocols. It will help them to make precise diagnosis and avoid over prescription of medicines."
The CM also said that the Supreme Court has lauded the Mumbai Municipal Corporation's work to restrict the spread. “As on April 25, there were almost seven lakh active cases in the state. The numbers came down to 6,41,900 as on May 4. We have been able to curtail the cases up to some point but some districts are still witnessing a rise. We have so far formed 12,000 ventilators, 4.5 lakh isolation beds, one lakh oxygen beds, 30,000 ICU beds and," he said.
Thackeray stated that Maharashtra will have to ramp up oxygen generation capacity to 3,000 MT and has started working on it.
Maharashtra is currently reeling under the weight of the second wave of the infection that has overcome the underprepared healthcare infrastructure of India.
GRAPH FLATTENING IN 15 DISTRICTS
As many as 15 districts in Maharashtra are showing a downward trend in the active caseload State Health Minister Rajesh Tope informed.
The districts registering a drop in cases are Raigad, Nanded, Dhule, Latur, Bhandara, Nandurbar, Osmanabad, Chandrapur, Mumbai, Aurangabad, Thane, Nashik, Gondia, Nagpur and Amravati.
He also said around 18.5 lakh vaccine doses - 13.58 lakh of Covishield and 4.89 lakh of Covaxin - had been ordered, as the state focuses vaccination of people in the 18-44 age group. Around nine lakh more doses have been received for people over 45, he further said.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra's COVID-19 deaths again shot up above the 900-mark to jump pass 72,000 mark while fresh cases also increased although the Mumbai situation remained favourable on Wednesday, according to health department. Compared with 891 deaths on Tuesday, the state reported 920, taking the total to 72,662.
The number of new infections stayed above the 50,000 level again, going up from 51,880 on Tuesday to 57,640 now, as the state tally reached 48,80,542 now.
On Thursday, the Supreme Court asked the Centre to revamp its formula for distribution of medical oxygen around the country. The court suggested that the Centre adopt a pan-India model so that they can prepare for the third wave of COVID. The top court had suggested the government should look to Mumbai as BMC had done a decent job of handling the COVID situation.