Jaipur, The cases of COVID-19 in Rajasthan are witnessing a decline but it does not mean that people get careless and violate the centre and state government’s guidelines, as the second wave is expected in winters.
Health Minister Dr Raghu Sharma spoke in detail about the second wave, preparations to deal with it, increasing awareness among people etc
Will Rajasthan witness the second wave of corona?
According to experts the second wave may come prior to December 15 this year, so people have to be very cautious, wear masks, maintain social distance and wash hands frequently to keep themselves safe. In winters there will be an increase in the cases of seasonal diseases, swine flu, dengue, cold and cough, pollution etc. If the pollution levels rise, corona cases will certainly surge. If people wear masks and maintain discipline for a month, then the corona chain can be broken.
Are we ready for the second wave of corona?
Rajasthan is ready if a second wave of corona comes. We have a lot of ICU beds, oxygen supported beds and general beds in the State. At the time when cases were at peak, the demand for oxygen cylinders was almost 13,000 per day but now has come down to 6000-7000 oxygen cylinders per day. The officers have been directed to make 25,000 oxygen cylinders available per day for the second wave. Apart from this, oxygen generation plants are being set up at district hospitals, sub-district hospitals and hospitals attached to medical colleges in the State so that corona infected patients do not face lack of oxygen for their treatment. Liquid oxygen plants are also being set up at hospitals attached to medical colleges and even the pipeline system is being developed, he added.
Why are masks more effective than vaccines?
The experts say that the masks are better than vaccines as the effect of the vaccine will not be more than 60%, but the chances of infection can be brought down by 90% by wearing masks regularly. Apart from reducing the risk of corona, there are many benefits of wearing masks, as it reduces the risk of several serious diseases. It has been aimed to eliminate tuberculosis by 2025 as wearing masks can control the cases of tuberculosis, asthma, allergy and other infectious diseases. Masks play an important role in prevention of silicosis and will prove effective.
Is it compulsory to wear masks in the State?
People in Rajasthan will have to develop the habit of wearing masks. Rajasthan Assembly has passed a bill making it compulsory for people to wear masks and it is the first state in the country to enact such a law. People cannot move in public places, public and private transport, workplace or at any social, political, general function or gathering without wearing masks. Chief Minister Shri Ashok Gehlot on October 2 launched ‘Public Movement Against Corona’ campaign in the entire State in which masks are being distributed and people are made aware about this deadly virus. Apart from this, ‘No Mask, No Entry’ campaign is also becoming successful, as not only government offices, but private offices, shops, commercial establishments and others are abiding by this and people are not allowed to enter until they wear a mask.
Do we have sufficient manpower at health institutions?
In regard to manpower, 765 doctors along with 12500 ANMs and GNMs were recruited during the corona period and the process of recruiting 2000 doctors is in progress. The health department has been recruiting radiographers, lab technicians, ECG technicians and others.
Why Post-COVID Clinics are being opened in each district?
The corona cases in the State are witnessing a dip but the after effects of corona are very serious as the virus is affecting brain/heart/kidneys/lungs/pancreas after recovery. Many casualties have taken place after the patient recovered from corona and after testing COVID negative. The State Government has opened Post COVID Clinics in the entire State, wherein the patients can consult doctors for any tests and complications after recovering from corona for a month.
Want to give any message for the general public?
My only appeal to all the people of Rajasthan is to remain alert and cautious during the upcoming festivals and winter season by taking proper precautions. I want all of you to wear masks while stepping out of the house and keep distance of six feet.