BENGALURU: With the Covid caseload crossing the 300-mark in Karnataka on Sunday, Health Commissioner D Randeep sought to dispel fears that it is the onset of the fourth wave, as there is no continuous increase in cases, or admissions, or spike in deaths, and neither have new variants been found.
However, Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar said June and July would be testing months for a Covid outbreak, and masking up and adherence to Covid-apt behaviour will mitigate this variant too.Covid-19 Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) member and director of Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences and Research, Bengaluru, Dr CN Manjunath told TNIE that there is a slow rise in cases now, and it might take another three or four weeks for the onset of the fourth wave. It would not be a “proper wave as such, where numbers double or triple, only a rise in cases that would be truncated, just like cases rose and plateaued in Mumbai and Delhi”.
He said, “Symptoms during the new wave would be the same as third wave, as these are variants or sub-lineages of Omicron. Ninety per cent of international passengers and those who tested positive before surgeries, were asymptomatic. Those who are not vaccinated are likely to be the target group this time. There is evidence that though there were more cases during the third wave, the number of hospital admissions and deaths was low due to vaccination, and also that the lungs were not infected. People should not be under the illusion that Covid has gone, but must take the precautionary dose and wear masks in closed spaces at least. Vaccination of children has taken a back seat as there is apathy among parents.”
He said the State must intensify genome sequencing. With schools reopening, children with symptoms of fever should be kept at home. Classes or units with high number of cases should be closed to break transmission. Those with multiple pre-existing comorbidities must be careful as even minor infections could trigger their health condition, Dr Manjunath said.
NO NEED TO PANIC, SAYS CM BOMMAI
As the number of Covid-19 cases rises, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai has sought a report from officials on the situation in the state. Based on the report, the government will decide on measures to be taken to contain its spread, in the next two to three days. “The situation is under complete control and there is no need for panic. We have already taken measures to control it,” the CM told media persons on Monday. The health department principal secretary will hold meetings to review the Covid situation in all districts and submit a report. “Based on the report, appropriate decisions would be taken in the next two to three days,” the CM said.