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COVID-19 cases might ‘double or triple’ in Meghalaya: Health experts

“The surge has been primarily because of returnees who have come from different states of the country,” the Health and Family Welfare Minister said.

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Shillong: Health experts in Meghalaya have warned that the COVID—19 cases might “double or triple” in the next two months in the State.
“In the next two months, cases are going to increase…tremendously increase. Cases might be double or triple,” Health and Family Welfare Minister, Alexander Laloo Hek told reporters said after a discussion with health experts on Monday.
He urged citizens across the State to take utmost precaution and strictly adhere to health protocols.
As health experts anticipate a possible spike in COVID-19 infections, Hek said that he had instructed the Health department to gear up for the worst.
“I have instructed them to look for playgrounds and educational institutions to utilise these areas as temporary hospitals,” the Health Minister said.
“We will be taking inputs from the health experts on several issues and also on lockdown this evening during the review meeting,” he added.
One of the worst-hit districts in the State has been East Khasi Hills. Most of the active cases over 1500 are in the State Capital.
He informed that out of these active cases, 27 critical are in critical condition. Moreover, 7 out of this total are on ventilators.
“The surge has been primarily because of returnees who have come from different states of the country,” the Health and Family Welfare Minister said.
Meanwhile, the Health Minister informed that on average 8,000 to 10,000 people, above the age of 45 years, are being vaccinated daily.
Stating that the State still has over “one lakh plus” vaccines in its stock, Hek said, if the daily average stays at the current rate, the vaccination drive would continue smoothly for the next two weeks.
However, the State has requested the Centre for additional vaccines for the vaccination for the above 18 years category slated to begin from May 1.
“We are asking for more than 5 lakh vaccines,” he said.
On the other hand, it has come to the notice of the authorities in East Khasi Hills district that “some persons tested COVID-19 positive” don’t maintain the 10 days mandatory period of home isolation, East Khasi Hills Deputy Commissioner, Isawanda Laloo said.
Some, who have tested positive, are stepping out of their homes and going for repeat testing in other health facilities even before the expiry of the 10 day period.
“In doing so, they are putting everyone they meet including their family, health workers and other general public at risk by breaking the protocol of home isolation,” Laloo added.
The District Magistrate, therefore warned that any positive persons found stepping out and violating the mandatory isolation period will be taken action against under the provision of the Meghalaya Epidemic Disease Regulations, 2020.

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