Chief Secretary P Ravi Kumar says docs and nurses getting infected, govt cannot create health infra overnight
With Bengaluru reporting its highest single-day figure of 16,662 Covid-19 cases on Saturday, a panicky state government has appealed to citizens to act responsibly, saying it alone cannot curb the spread of the dreaded virus.
Chief Secretary P Ravi Kumar on Saturday reviewed the alarming situation in Bengaluru and appealed to people to not step out of their homes even though the government has relaxed several of the week-end and night curfew restrictions.
Speaking to the media, Ravi Kumar said, “People know about the virus and still they behave irresponsibly. Tomorrow, even if the government decides to open up everything, they should continue to behave responsibly. People should come out of their homes only if it is absolutely necessary, and then make sure to wear a mask.”
‘Whither docs, nurses?’
Bemoaning the fact that even doctors and nurses are getting infected, and the government cannot create additional health infrastructure overnight, he said, “Everyone knows beds in hospitals cannot be created overnight. Let’s assume beds can be created, but from where will we bring doctors and nurses? Even they are getting infected. There is a limit to the number of beds in hospitals. The government is doing its best in this situation.”
He said, “The Chief Minister has decided to curb activities for 14 days with a week-end and week-day curfew. Meantime, we cannot curb the economic activities like it was done during the first lockdown. We have to allow economic activities during the day, but everyone has to observe Covid-appropriate behaviour if the curbs are not to become stricter.”
Expressing the hope that the number of cases in Bengaluru would come down, the Chief Secretary said, “We need to see if the current restrictions have an impact on the number of new cases. The government will review the situation and decide either to relax or tighten curbs.”
‘10% beds in CCCs with oxygen’
Ravi Kumar said the government was planning to provide at least 10% of oxygen beds in Covid Care Centres, “but those will be basic oxygen beds and we cannot provide the entire ICU facility at CCCs. And to provide basic oxygen beds too, we need at least 15 days to build the infrastructure.”
Insisiting that there is no oxygen shortage in the state, the Chief Secretary said, “The problem is faced only by smaller hospitals as they do not have oxygen plants and depend on oxygen cylinders. These smaller hospitals face a problem of refills because of the time taken for transportation of cylinders.”
Plea to younger lot
Focusing on the younger age groups, the Chief Secretary appealed to them to stay at home. He said, “During the first wave we have seen people above 60 years getting infected, but in the present scenario people above 40 years and even younger are getting infected.”