Maharashtra is expected to see a spike in hospitalisation of COVID-19 patients this month-end or in the first week of February, according to the state health department. The state cabinet expressed concern after the health department made this projection during a presentation before it on Wednesday, a statement issued by the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) said. The daily requirement of medical oxygen in the state has witnessed a rise, it said, adding that the present demand is 400 metric tonnes.
“If the oxygen demand rises to 700 metric tonnes, then stricter curbs will be required. Considering this fact, the district administrations should expedite vaccination and take necessary steps,” Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said during the meeting. Along with the urban centres, rural parts of the state are also affected by COVID-19, he said.
“Fully vaccinated COVID-19 patients don’t require medical oxygen. But, people need to be vigilant as the UK and the US are witnessing a strain on their health infrastructure,” the CM said.
The state on Wednesday recorded 46,723 fresh coronavirus cases, a jump of 12,299 infections from a day ago, and 32 fresh fatalities. The new cases included 86 Omicron infections.
Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Wednesday cautioned that the coronavirus curve in the state is not flattening despite a dip in the number of daily COVID-19 cases in the last couple of days. There is a silver lining that out of the 2.25 lakh active cases, only 14 per cent are under hospitalisation, he told reporters.
Tope said he doesn’t expect the situation to stabilise by January-end or by early February, and urged those who have not undergone vaccination to take jabs, besides masking-up by all.