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Maharashtra: Real Corona horror may unfold in next 10 days




In a grim prediction, the Maharashtra government has indicated that the real horrors of Covid-19 may unfold in the next 10 days with a steep spike in ‘active cases’ in the worst-hit state in the country, here on Wednesday.

While Pune currently has an ‘active case’ load of 117,251, Mumbai follows next with 82,671 ‘active cases’.

These figures are likely to shoot up drastically – 185,162 in Pune and 146,065 in Mumbai ‘active cases’, respectively – by May 2, as per a projection made by the State Public Health Department.

Next on the list are: Thane with 80,440 ‘active cases’ currently (projected – 122,476) and Nagpur with 78,484 ‘active cases’ (estimated 1,23,680).

This is expected to put severe strain on the overall health infrastructure in these four worst ‘hotspots’ – but with the exception of Mumbai – Pune, Thane and Nagpur would face a massive scarcity of even basic isolation beds in quarantine centres.

At that time, Mumbai is expected to have a small surplus (+3,837) isolation beds, but there will be a huge shortage of isolation beds in Pune (-34,528), Nagpur (-32,364) and Thane (-19,821).

This could mean many ‘active cases’ forced to remain at home or experience delays in admission till isolation beds are available, posing risks to the patients and others, said an official.

However, all four cities shall witness big shortages of other essentials like oxygen beds, ICU beds and ventilators even as a serious situation is building up over the next fortnight.

Mumbai will run short of oxygen beds (-6,433), ICU beds ((-1,477) and ventilators (-121), Pune will have a shortage of oxygen beds (-13,118), ICU beds (-2,240) and ventilators (-598).

Similarly, in Thane the status of oxygen beds would be (-4,949), ICU beds (-1,267) and ventilators (-432), and Nagpur the situation of oxygen beds will be (-32,364), ICU beds (-10,476) and ventilators (-520).

With the number of ‘active cases’ set to spike hugely in the other 32 districts also, the availability of these infrastructure would be severely inadequate around the state.

Barring Mumbai, Palghar, Ratnagiri, Kolhapur, Solapur, Jalgaon and Amravati, the remaining 29 districts will not have sufficient isolation beds for ‘active cases’.

Regarding the status of oxygen beds, except Palghar, Sangli, Kolhapur, Jalgaon, Amravati, Akola, Buldhana and Gadchiroli, patients in the remaining 28 districts could be left gasping due to insufficient oxygen supply.

As far as ICU beds are concerned, 25 districts barring Ratnagiri, Satara, Sangli, Kolhapur, Solapur, Jalgaon, Nanded, Amravati, Akola, Washim and Buldhana, will complain of short supply of ICU beds.

The scenario could be equally horrendous on the last-stage of treatment on ventilators – only Palghar, Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg, Satara, Sangli, Kolhapur, Solapur, Nashik, Jalgaon, Dhule, Aurangabad, Osmanabad, Amravati, Akola, Washim, Buldhana, Yavatmal and Gadchiroli would have adequate numbers – but the remaining 18 districts patients could face huge problems without sufficient number of ventilators, too.

On the present case-load, only 14 districts have spare isolation beds, but in the remaining 22 districts, the demand ranges between 60 per cent and 180 per cent of the existing capacity.

Based on the death rate registered till date, districts of Buldhana, Akola, Nandurbar, Jalgaon and Nanded shall be on “watch” over the next few days, as per the government estimates.


Congress MP Rajeev Satav loses battle to Covid



Senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member from Maharashtra, Rajiv Satav, passed away in a hospital here after a 23-day long battle with Covid-19, party officials said here on Sunday.

He was 46, and belonged to the core team of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.

Satav had developed Covid symptoms on April 19 and a swab test turned out to be positive on April 21.

He was admitted to the Jehangir Hospital in Pune and as his condition worsened, a week later he was put on a ventilator.

After a brief spell of recovery, his condition again deteriorated alarmingly since the last week and he remained in the ICU where he succumbed early today

Health Minister Rajesh Tope said on Friday that besides Covid-19, Satav was also being treated cytomegalovirus infection and some additional complications with the help of experts.

State Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat visited the hospital and inquired about his health while Minister of State for Agriculture and Congress leader Vishwajeet Kadam was regularly in touch with the family and the hospital.

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Mumbai Police give ‘Friends’ reunion witty spin to spread Covid awareness



Mumbai Police have given a witty, quirky twist to the much-hyped and upcoming “Friends” reunion special, in a bid to create Covid-19 awareness.

The official Twitter handle of Mumbai Police shared a snapshot of the “Friends” reunion teaser and urgd everyone to reunite with friends only after the final season of Covid-19.

“‘Reunite’ with your F.R.I.E.N.D.S – but only after the final season of #COVID19 please? Till then, online meet-ups will �be there for you’ #FriendsForever #FriendsOfSafety #TakingOnCorona,” the tweet on the microblogging website read.

This is not the first time Mumbai Police has referred to the entertainment world to create awareness.

Previously they have tweeted with stills and dialogues from films like “Uri: The Surgical Strike”, “Gulabo Sitabo”, “Main Hoon Na” and “Stree” among many others for the purpose.

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Maharashtra keeps vaccination of 18-44 age group on hold




Owing to continued shortage of vaccines, the Maharashtra government on Wednesday decided to temporarily put on hold the inoculation drive for the 18-44 age groups, Health Minister Rajesh Tope said here.

The stocks would be diverted to carry out a seamless and hassle-free vaccination for the 45-plus age group category till adequate doses of the vaccines are made available.

The decision came after a cabinet meeting presided over by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

“The vaccination for the 18-44 age group commenced on May 1. Till date, we have vaccinated 5-6 lakh people in that category, however, there is a shortage of vaccines,” Tope told media persons.

He said that there is a scarcity of both brands of the vaccines – Covishield manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, Pune, and Covaxin, produced by Bharat Biotech International Ltd, Hyderabad.

The current priority is to give the second dose to the 45-plus age groups who have already got one jab which should not go waste owing to delays due to shortages, he pointed out.

“Efficacy of the vaccines may be affected if the second dose is not administered within the stipulated time period,” said Tope, justifying the government stand to keep in abeyance the drive for the 18-44 age groups.

The government is making requests for more stocks to the Centre besides trying to source it from the international markets and the BMC plans to float global tenders for the same this week.

In a related development, the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation has announced ‘Walk-in Vaccination’ for senior citizens aged above 60 for three days from Monday.

“The Walk-in Vaccination shall be permitted for all above 60 years, all who are due for the second dose and all differently-abled people. The special drive shall be conducted in all government and civic-run vaccination centres across the city from May 17-19,” Municipal Commissioner I.S. Chahal said.

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