Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government is ramping up medical facilities to tackle the situation arising out of the second wave of COVID-19, Director (Health) Bijay Panigrahi informed on Friday.
“The state administration is well prepared to meet any kind of eventuality due to the resurgence of COVID-19 this year,” Panigrahi told the media.
“The number of beds at the three top medical colleges will be doubled or tripled very soon. All hospitals across the state will have high dependency units. Oxygen cylinders will be ramped up ten-fold in hospitals,“ he added.
“Efforts are on to provide as many as 555 ventilators to the private medical facilities in the state. The availability of ventilators in government hospitals will be enhanced from 108 to 423,” he informed.
Besides, the Odisha government has demanded at least 25 lakh doses of COVID-19 vaccines in a single lot from the Centre as it is unable to expedite the ongoing immunisation programme.
At the same time, the Health Director cautioned that the infection will further spread in the coming days if people are not careful.
“Last year we were able to keep the pandemic in check due to the right kind of preparedness. People should obey the COVID-19 norms strictly to keep the pandemic at bay,” he said.
Youngsters At Risk
Panigrahi revealed that the second wave of COVID-19 infecting the younger population more that the elderly. Even people below 18 years of age are suffering from severe symptoms, he said,
“The infection is spreading faster and younger population is being mostly infected this time around. Therefore, I request the people to strictly adhere to the Covid appropriate behaviour,” Panigrahi said.
“A recent study revealed that around 8 per cent of people below 18 years of age are getting more affected. Unlike last year, the severity of infection in younger children has also increased and if they are not given treatment in time, it may risk their lives,” he added.