Maharashtra: Health Minister Tope Warns of a Third COVID Wave Ahead of Festivals

Maharashtra: Health Minister Tope Warns of a Third COVID Wave Ahead of Festivals

Speaking at a press conference in Mumbai, Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope said that the third COVID-19 wave could hit the state during the coming months. 

He said that the state has sent circulars to local officials and collectors directing them to conclude vaccination of teaching and non-teaching staff before September 5.

“There is the possibility of a third wave of incoming festivals months so we are also discussing avoiding local bodies' elections and we are on alert mode on this too,” Tope said. 

Tope also said that the Centre has promised 1.7 crore vaccine doses for Maharashtra, adding that this will help combat the scarcity.

ReadMaharashtra: Health Department Says 3rd Wave Could Bring 60 Lakh New COVID Cases

The Health Minister went on to say that the government has hired 1,200 doctors and that it will have 7,000 more healthcare staff by the end of September. “We are increasing the production of oxygen and the number of hospital beds. We've purchased 1000 new ambulances,” he added.

Meanwhile, ASHA workers statewide will get a salary increment of ₹1,500 while group coordinators will see an increase of ₹1,700 to their salaries. Tope said that this move will benefit up to 71,000 ASHA workers across the state. The Maharashtra Government has reportedly allocated ₹275 crores in the budget for these increments.   

Concerns about a third wave have been looming for a while now with estimates suggesting that Maharashtra could witness up to 60 lakh cases. The increasing number of COVID cases in states like Kerala also remains a concern for the state. Tope said that he held a telephonic discussion with the Kerala Health Minister on the matter. 

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