BHUBANESWAR: Odisha on Monday reported 571 new cases, the highest spike in the last four months, as the second wave becomes more marked in the State by each passing day.
With the surge most prominent in the districts bordering Chhattisgarh, the State rushed 36 specialists to four worst-affected districts - Kalahandi, Malkangiri, Nabarangpur and Nuapada for augmenting healthcare system. The doctors from SCB and MKCG medical colleges have been asked to immediately join duty.
Additional Chief Secretary (Health) PK Mohapatra said districts have been directed to open separate fever clinics in all health facilities depending on the SARI/ILI caseload and deploy rapid response teams in all blocks to ensure treatment and referral as per protocol to minimise death rate.
"They have also been asked to activate district control room with team of AYUSH doctors to monitor patients and ensure that the ambulance system is ready for shifting of critical patients. Some of the districts have already reopened the dedicated COVID hospitals as per the direction keeping in view the rising infections," he added.
New cases in the State have grown by a whopping 5,610 per cent (pc) in the last one month as the daily caseload was only 10 on March 4. Of the fresh cases, 337 were in quarantine and 236 local contacts. The new cases rose by 21 per cent from the previous day’s count of 471 infections.
The test positivity rate (TPR) also soared to two pc from 0.5 pc in a fortnight.Khurda district recorded the highest 96 fresh cases followed by Sundargarh (80), Nuapada (60), Bargarh (43), Jharsuguda (39), Angul (32), Cuttack (28), Kalahandi (24) and Balangir (20).
Apart from Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Angul, bulk of the new infections has been detected from six districts bordering Chhattisgarh, the epicenter of coronavirus resurgence. Sundargarh, Nuapada, Jharsuguda, Bargarh, Kalahandi and Balangir accounted for nearly 47 per cent of the daily caseload.
As the cases surged in border districts, the administration intensified surveillance and screening of people coming from the neighbouring state at all the entry points.
Ganjam district administration on Monday issued additional guidelines revising the cap on the number of guests at marriage ceremonies from 200 to 100 and ordered that the hosts will have to provide packaged food instead of organising community feast at such events.
The 571 new cases took the tally to 3,43,268 of which 3,38,150 have recovered and 1,922 succumbed. The active cases stand at 3,143.