Hyderabad: Ruling out another lockdown in Telangana, the director of public health, Dr. G Srinivas Rao, on 17 April said more people will die of hunger than COVID-19 if a second lockdown is imposed. At this moment there is no need for a night curfew or a weekend curfew in Telangana, he said while addressing the media on Saturday, adding the situation is under control and beds, medicines, and other emergency equipment are available in the state.

He said that the youth are the main reason for the spread of COVID-19 in the second wave, which is more severe than the first wave. "Eighty per cent of COVID-positive patients do not have any symptoms and only 12 per cent are showing symptoms. The situation is grim across the country. The second wave is spreading at a rapid pace and if the spread continues at the same rate, the nation cannot handle the cases and its effects and it could be more fatal," he said.

Telangana is conducting 1.25 lakh tests per day and 2.99 per cent samples have tested positive, which is much less than the national average of 3.98 per cent, Dr. Rao said while adding that the number of tests will increase in the coming days.

The official said that earlier, there were 18,000 beds in the state and only 40 per cent were allotted for COVID-19 patients. At present, he said 53,000 beds are available in the state and 116 government hospitals are treating COVID patients, five of which are in the city. He assured that there was no shortage of beds and Oxygen cylinders in both government and private hospitals.

Regarding the shortage of Remidesivir, he said it is not an important drug in treating COVID-19 and is still in the testing stage. "Affected people will be prescribed other medications besides Remidesivir. We have also directed private hospitals to not use Remidesivir unnecessarily," he said.

He reiterated that the state government was equipped to handle the situation even if there was a spike in cases but reminded that people should follow the safety protocols strictly till June.

About COVID-19 vaccine, Dr. Rao said vaccines are being administered in 1,300 centers across the state and 28 lakh people have already taken the shot, with which 25 per cent target was reached. He said there was a shortage of vaccine for the past two days but 25 lakh people have already received the first shot.

He urged people to not believe everything being circulated on social media and call 104 for any queries. He also urged people to postpone weddings and said he knows the pain of losing a father due to COVID-19.

Newsmeter Network

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