In order to ensure quality care to Covid patients in the state, Punjab Chief Secretary, Vini Mahajan, on Wednesday ordered immediate ban on all the elective surgeries besides reserving 75 per cent beds in the private hospitals for Covid patients to help conquer the ongoing second wave effectively.Chairing a meeting of the administrative secretaries, Deputy Commissioners, Commissioners of Police and Senior Superintendents of Police to review the current Covid situation here, the Chief Secretary urged the people to come forward for Covid vaccination as it was safe and the only way to defeat the pandemic.Sharing the communique from the Centre that a consignment of 4 lakh more doses of Covishield vaccine has been dispatched to Punjab, which will reach tomorrow, Ms Mahajan directed the Health department to further ramp up the ongoing vaccination drive.She also ordered the delivery of the ‘Corona Fateh Kit’ (medical kit) and food kit to every patient on the very same day he/ she tests positive.Asking the DCs to ensure the updation of CoWin portal on a regular basis, the Chief Secretary said the regular updation of the portal will also help them to know about the exact status of the vaccine doses available. “Vaccine wastage should be further brought down and Covaxin vaccination centres should be set up at district, sub-division and select private hospitals,” she instructed, while emphasising the need to strategize vaccination centres in a manner so that at least 100 beneficiaries were covered per session.She also asked the concerned departments to ensure that the vaccine was being utilised by peripheral units and shift the unutilised vaccine to the nearest centre immediately. “Vaccine should be issued to district, sub-division hospitals, and community health centres and all peripheral centres should take daily supply from these facilities and return unutilised vaccine back to these stores on a daily basis,” Ms Mahajan desired.
Instructing the official machinery to go an extra mile to involve religious and social leaders in the fight against the surging virus, the Chief Secretary said the SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur has assured all support to the state government in its fight against the virus.Principal Secretary Health, Hussan Lal, apprised the Chief Secretary that they have reached the 54,000-mark in daily testing and will ramp it up further in the coming days.Patting the health and frontline workers for discharging their duties with utmost sincerity and dedication, the Chief Secretary said the OPD patients should be encouraged for testing and vaccination. “High risk home isolated patients should be visited every 2 days by health teams, besides strengthening the sampling teams to bring down the positivity rate to less than 5 per cent,” she asked.Allaying the rumours about oxygen shortage, Ms Mahajan said the state has sufficient medical oxygen and no person will be allowed to hoard the oxygen illegally. “Strict action will be taken if anyone is found indulging in such illegal activity,” she stressed, while asking the district administrations to update their oxygen demand and supply on a daily basis.The Chief Secretary said the BLOs will be deputed for rural areas to mobilise eligible persons for vaccination. The DCs have been authorised to engage manpower from other departments for Covid management besides the RMOs and pharmacists will be kept at the disposal of Civil Surgeons.The Director General of Police (DGP), Mr Dinkar Gupta, informed the meeting that the state police were ensuring strict enforcement of recently announced restrictions by the state government, including night curfew and restrictions on all types of gatherings in public places and homes as well.He said 130 FIRs have been registered against the violators of Covid norms across the state in the last 24 hours. Besides, the police have booked around 189 owners of marriage palaces, malls, hotels, and restaurants for violations of curfew timings and gathering limits in the state since April 18.The meeting was attended by Health Advisor Dr KK Talwar, BFUHS Vice-Chancellor Dr Raj Bahadur, SHSRC ED Prof Rajesh Kumar, Principal Secretary Industries Alok Shekhar, Principal Secretary Medical Education and Research DK Tiwari, Punjab NHM MD Kumar Rahul, PHSC MD Tanu Kashyap, Special Secretary Health Amit Kumar, Director Health Services Dr GB Singh, Covid Nodal Officer Dr Rajesh Bhaskar and other seniors officers concerned.