U’khand lacks scientific projection on spread of contagion
Based on doubling rate the health dept visualises 3500 Covid- 19 patients by end of June
Absence of necessary expertise has ensured that the health department of Uttarakhand lacks any long term scientific projections for the extent to which the infection of Covid-19 could spread in the Himalayan state. However the department is visualising about 3500 Covid-19 patients till the end of this month which basically is a short term projection.
In the state, 1942 patients of the disease have so far been reported. Incidentally the health department has not undertaken any study or sponsored any research based on mathematical modelling by which it can make any assumptions on the future course of the disease. The state is banking heavily on the central government’s guidelines and studies of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on the disease.
It is pertinent to mention here that recently the deputy chief minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia had claimed that the Delhi government has projected that the number of Covid-19 patients in Delhi could be around 5.5 lakhs by the end of July.
In comparison to Delhi, the projections of the Uttarakhand health department are primarily short term and are basically inferred from the doubling rate of the disease. The doubling rate is time taken for the number of patients to become double. In the state the doubling rate at present is 24.57 days at 3 pm on Tuesday. Incidentally, the doubling rate in the state has seen high variations. For example, the doubling rate on May 8 was 96 days which became 3.98 days on May 25. Experts opine that considering the large scale variation in the doubling rate any dependence on this data to infer any model for further increase of the disease is not reliable. Moreover with increase in the number of cases, the doubling rate tends to increase.
When contacted by The Pioneer, a senior health department official said that in absence of necessary expertise, the health department has not made any long term calculation for the number of patients. He however added that the department has made its preparation to tackle the disease. “We are focusing on containment of the disease and reducing deaths from Covid-19,’’ he said.
Incidentally the state health department has about 2000 beds for Covid-19 patients in different facilities. The state has five Dedicated Covid Hospitals (DCH) where 825 beds are available. Similarly there are 12 dedicated Covid centres where 1066 beds of the Covid-19 patients are available. Apart from them, the department has set up 207 Covid Care Centres (CCC) where 18000 beds are earmarked for the patients of the disease. The number of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds in government sector is in excess of 200 while there are 136 beds with facility of ventilators.
Wednesday, 17 June 2020 | Gajendra Singh Negi | Dehradun
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