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Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Covid 19 - inept handling by some States !!

Though there reportedly were cases of Corona (Covid 19) in year 2019 itself, in Mar 2020, we heard it more often and by 24th Mar 2020, India was under lockdown. 

2021 dawned with lot of hopes but in between the cases spurted and there was 2nd wave doing more damage ! – as we wait for 2022 to be born, there are threats and fears.  According to some reports, India may see a spurt in the Covid-19 growth rate within days and head into an intense but short-lived virus wave as the highly-infectious omicron variant moves through the crowded nation of almost 1.4 billion. 

Omicron cases reportedly a very high in Europe and USA  and in many parts of the Universe, our Nation with an estimated population  of  1,326,093,247 too faces trouble.  At the hinterland, there are reports that Beijing has ordered roads, buildings and open spaces to be disinfected in the Chinese city of Xian as it upgraded lockdown restrictions to their 'strictest level' . Xian's case load - 150 on Sunday versus 155 a day earlier - remains tiny compared with many clusters overseas, but Beijing has moved rapidly to impose strict curbs, ordering all residents to stay at home for all but essential travel last Thursday. The city's 13 million residents were given just a few hours' notice on Sunday afternoon that a 'full-scale' deep clean would start at 6pm with pictures showing trucks cannoning a fog of disinfectant as they toured the streets, while workers in full PPE sprayed chemicals on buildings and in subway stations.  

In year 2020, there were concerted attempts to discredit the Central Govt and many State Govts on the way they handled Covid.  A state bigger and has more population than Pakistan, the State of UP and its CM Sri Yogi Adityanath were targeted by media, who in the same breathe lauded Kerala State.  In  2020 Kerala received applause for its innovative approaches in fighting the pandemic!!, the next year exposed the loopholes in the system when the second Covid wave hit the state. The state experienced most problems seen in others states due to the exponential increase in cases. 

As the caseload began to rise, the government roped in private hospitals, but allegations of overcharging began to surface. With the high court intervening, the government had to cap the rates for room, consumables and even tests. In addition, complaints about underreporting of Covid deaths, TPR manipulation and inadequate testing continued to mount in the so called model State of Kerala. Further, the state’s vaccination drive has not been exceptional and it is yet to achieve 100% first dose vaccination coverage.  The state that all through 2020 boasted of having the country’s lowest case fatality rate, is now second only to Maharashtra in the number of deaths, once it started adding backlog of unreported Covid fatalities. 

In the second wave, cases peaked with the rest of India but there was no real decline and the state remained stuck on a long plateau, indicating the presence of infection in the society. “In 2021, for the first time, Kerala model of healthcare was challenged. We failed to control the rapid spread of the Delta variant,” said Dr Jayakrishnan A V, chairman of IMA’s committee on Covid vaccines and vaccination strategy. As a result, Kerala remained in a lockdown mode for a prolonged period of time, leading to business closures and job losses, and there has been a string of suicides due to soaring unemployment and crippling debt. The uncertainty, psychiatrist Dr CJ John said, has led to increased stress and depression in people.  “Now, there is no chaotic uncertainty, be it in the case of treatment, prognosis or risk factors,” said Dr G S Vijayakrishnan, president of KGMOA.  

To conclude on a positive ntoe, India has cleared two more covid vaccines and one pill today. The two latest vaccines approved by drug regulator CDSCO are Corbevax and Covovax. The anti-viral drug Molnupiravir can be used only in an emergency, informed Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya.  The subject Expert committee recommended granting restricted emergency use approval to the drug Molnupiravir for treatment of adult patients with COVID-19 and who have high risk of progression of the disease. With this approval, the number of Covid vaccines which have received emergency use authorisation in the country has increased to eight. 

Stay safe, don’t venture out – unless essential, wear mask, keep social distancing, clean / sanitise your hands and wash them with soap water often. 

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
28th Dec 2021.
1: Sources: Wikipedia, Johns Hopkins University, Our World in Data :


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