Kerala

Non-COVID care to resume soon: CM

Non-COVID care would resume in all hospitals, including medical college hospitals, like before and the Health Department had been directed to take the necessary steps to facilitate this, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said here on Friday.

With many hospitals focussing on COVID care alone and many tertiary care hospitals converted to exclusive COVID hospitals, non-COVID patients had undergone much hardships. After the first wave subsided, non-COVID patients had started coming back to hospitals when the second wave hit, forcing hospitals to go back to COVID care.

The government was aware of the hardships that non-COVID patients were put to and non-COVID care would now be opened up in phases, Mr. Vijayan, said.

The government was taking steps to help medical students - postgraduate students and house surgeons - resume their studies. All medical students had been vaccinated. It was important that these students complete their medical studies so that as qualified doctors, their services could be utilised later, he added.

He said that though the State had lifted the lockdown and relaxed restrictions, it should not be assumed that the second wave was over or that COVID had ended.

The unlock was possible because of the reduction in disease transmission, which was a result of the vigil and caution exercised by people. If people start to behave like everything is normal and resume get-togethers and gatherings, disease transmission would go up again, he said. Hence, despite the relaxations allowed, people should exercise self-restraint and ensure that there was no laxity in protocols, which may lead to a third wave.

The circulation of highly transmissible Delta variant is rampant in the State and hence people should continue to take all precautions against it, including double masking. Even small gatherings and crowds on the streets could lead to a surge in transmission.

The possibility of a third wave, the emergence of a virus variant more transmissible than the Delta variant and international travel increasing the possibility of disease transmission should not be discounted, Mr. Vijayan, said.

He said the government was preparing the health system to meet a possible third wave, with the worst case scenario in mind. Isolation wards, oxygen beds and ICU wards are being added and paediatric facilities have been strengthened.

Vaccination process will be speeded up as more vaccines are made available by the Centre soon. The State has covered 40% of its population with a single dose of vaccine. He said that some lacunae in the COVID vaccination certificates issued by the State for those going abroad had been pointed out and that would be rectified soon.

The vaccination of the differently abled, disabled, senior citizens and illiterate persons will be facilitated by deploying volunteers to visit these categories at home.


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Printable version | Jul 28, 2021 6:36:59 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/non-covid-care-to-resume-soon-cm/article34852445.ece

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