Odisha Govt Ready To Protect Children In Third Wave Of COVID: Minister

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government has completed its preparation for the possible onset of the third wave of COVID-19, said Health and Family Welfare minister Naba Kishore Das on Sunday.

He said the Health Department through a standard operating procedure (SOP) on June 17 this year has directed the district collectors, municipal commissioners and medical colleges and hospitals to take necessary measures.

He further said as the health experts have predicted that the children will be most affected during the third wave, the doctors and the health staff of all Community Health Centres (CHCs) are being trained accordingly.

“Besides, instructions have already been issued to all district headquarters hospitals and sub-divisional hospitals to ensure at least 10 paediatric beds in the isolation wards to deal with suspect cases. The CHCs have been asked to put up at least 2-4 beds,” he said.

“For the critical care, efforts are on for setting up 64 Newborn Intensive Care Units (NICUs) in the state-run medical colleges and hospitals including 20 in Veer Surendra Sai Institute of Medical Sciences and Research (VIMSAR) at Burla and 10 each in SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack and Fakir Mohan Medical College and Hospital in Balasore. Apart from this, these medical colleges and hospitals have been asked to put up 94 Paediatric Intensive Care Units (PICUs) and 44 high dependency units (HDUs),” Das said.

He further said on the order of the Chief Minister, about 200 COVID hospitals have been opened in the state with separate isolation wards for the children. The Health Department has also directed all government hospitals to make necessary provisions for the parents who will remain with their ailing children.

On the prevailing pandemic situation in the state, Das said though there is a gradual decline in the number of infections, the people must keep themselves protected from the possible third wave.

“The state government has increased the number of beds in all district hospitals and ensured adequate stock of oxygen and medicines to deal with any emergency situation. Besides, the COVID vaccination drive has been intensified to cover as many people as possible,” the minister said.

He appealed to the people to strictly adhere to the COVID appropriate behaviour to fight the pandemic successfully.

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