TODAY -

Will election ruin gains made in virus fight?
- The People's Chronicle Editorial :: September 02, 2021 -



THE state's daily positivity rate dipping to 8.76 per on Tuesday, which is the lowest in a 75-day span, yet again testifies that the virus containment measures, that should primarily centre on early detection of contacts of the infected persons, had not been commendable for at-least the past two months.

Contrary to the government's claim that there has been compatible improvement in the healthcare sector through installation of basic infrastructure like medical oxygen plants workers, special recruitment of medical personnel and support staff and setting up of Covid-specific facilities, the rate of testing samples has been rather static, thereby negating all efforts to stabilise the pandemic situation.

For instance, testing of 5600 samples on August 1 was the best figure for the month just ended during which the test positivity rates hovered above 10 per cent with exception of only 5-6 days when the single day rate was below 8-9 per cent.

With the authorities caught napping, literally, when the second wave hit the state in April, it is understandable that the containment measures were not the most effective as the virulent nature of the mutant virus exposed shortcomings in the healthcare infrastructure, particularly inadequacy in availability of medical oxygen and shortage of hospital beds.

However, failure to plug the loopholes in time led to the state recording monthly positivity rate of 18.27 in May.

Consequent to the authorities swinging into action to curb the contagion through ramping up of the contact testing drives such as house-to-house and random tests, the positivity rate came down to around 10 per cent.

In-spite of the relatively slight improvement in the pandemic situation, the daily cases surged in July, seeing monthly positivity rate of 15.52 per cent, thereby indicating complacency on the part of the department and personnel entrusted to manage the situation.

With August ending on better note at 12.29 per cent coupled with the last day of the month recording the lowest 'daily positivity rate after 75 days, it is desired that the department concerned galvanise all available resources to effectively break the chain of transmission for failure to do so will only result in more miseries, especially in view of the election momentum gaining pace and resumption of almost all commercial activities.

While detection of Delta plus variants in the state is already ominous for the masses, it is obvious that sitting MLAs and former legislators as well as rookie candidates wouldn't be concerned with public safety or following Covid appropriate behaviour for their sole objective would be to impress and woo the voters at any cost.

As the political class generally consider election as a life-time investment, it is but natural that maximising their support base would be the primary agenda.

For candidate aspirants clamouring to draw attention of the political bosses to secure the party's ticket, the dip in the daily test positivity rate would be construed as a blessing to intensify the election campaign.

Thus, it is the healthcare workers who will have to shoulder the responsibility of bringing further improvement in the pandemic situation to avert possible disastrous consequences in case the predicted third wave hits the state.



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