BENGALURU: The intensity and scale of Covid second wave shook off the preparations in the country, said Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman, who along with other experts from various fields, discussed the scenario after the second wave in the country on Saturday.
A virtual edition of IIMBueX, a leadership conclave organised by the alumni of IIM-Bangalore, had Dr Devi Shetty, cardiac surgeon and chairperson of IIM-B Board of Governors, Dr Gagandeep Kang, clinical scientist, Hrish Mittal, president of IIMBAA, Prof Chinmay Tumbe, author of Age of Pandemics and faculty, IIM-Ahmedabad and others. Sitharaman said, “The second wave hit us so hard that there was no preparation. The amount of medicines and other infrastructure was not adequate and this resulted in a severe period of stress. However, the peak is coming down. We hope to maintain the downward trend.”
Dr Shetty pointed out, “We need to ramp up the healthcare system, by not building more hospitals, but by focusing on setting up nursing colleges, doubling medical seats and starting a micro-health insurance which can be accessed through phone... there should be a panel of experts to address the third wave.”
‘We’ll see 6b jabs this yr’
Dr Gagandeep Kang, a top clinical scientist, said, “The vaccine rollout was slow because supply chains are set up to handle only so much. An estimation done last year anticipated that around 2.5 billion doses could be made in 2021. But with a lot of effort by multilateral agencies and governments, we think we will have 6 billion or more doses this year.”