We can ramp up vaccination target to 3 lakh daily: Dr K Sudhakar
The state government is girding its loins to stop the spread of a possible second wave of Covid-19 and in the next 50 days, doctors, healthcare workers and officials will be working in ‘mission mode’, said Health and Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar.
In the wake of an uptick in Covid-19 cases in Karnataka, and especially in Bengaluru, the Minister chaired a meeting on Thursday with senior officials and heads of key government hospitals to discuss the course of action. Speaking to the media later, Dr Sudhakar emphasised the importance of comprehensive vaccine coverage. Noting that recently nearly 2.5 lakh inoculations were done in a single day, he said it was possible to ramp up the vaccination target to 3 lakh people per day. “If we vaccinate senior citizens and people above 45 years with comorbidities, we can prevent a second wave,” felt Dr Sudhakar.
Around 200 ambulances have been deployed in Bengaluru to ensure that there is no inadequacy of ambulances during an emergency. The war room will resume operations as it did during the height of the pandemic last year, and the government will monitor the situation using real-time data. It has been decided to recruit resident doctors and paramedical staff on a temporary basis, the Minister said.
The government will hold talks with private hospitals this week to reserve beds for Covid-19 patients. If the infection spreads, more private hospitals will be roped in. The heads of institutions will be held accountable for any lapse, the Minister said.
“There was lack of information and awareness when the pandemic hit us last year. Yet, we were successful in controlling the pandemic. We are now anticipating a possible second wave and are preparing to fight it. We also have the advantage of the vaccine now, which we didn’t have last year. Meanwhile, people should follow precautions and not let their guard down,” Dr Sudhakar said.
A 1,000-bed Covid Care Centre is being readied in Bengaluru and will be operational by Monday, the Minister said. “I have instructed officials to ensure that the vaccine doses are not wasted, and I will personally monitor this on a daily basis,” he added.