The Karnataka Government has ordered for checkposts to be set up to arrest the growth of COVID-19 infections in districts surrounding Bengaluru and those sharing interstate borders. The Karnataka Chief Secretary issued the orders after a high level meeting on Thursday chaired by the Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa.
This decision comes after a few districts like Tumakuru reported that a majority of their oxygen, ICU beds have been occupied by patients from Bengaluru. Further it was discussed that interstate travellers could also be carriers of the infection.
The CS who is also the Chairman of the State Disaster Management Authority said these checkposts can be used to keep track of interstate and interdistrict travellers. Districts have been permitted to isolate them if required. All DCs were told that they can use all idle government buildings including residential schools to set up quarantine facilities.
The meeting was attended by all top officials and ministers including district-in charge ministers, Deputy Commissioners (DCs), Chief Executive officers (CEOs) of district panchayats, Superintendents of Police (SPs) of all the districts.
Karnataka reported a total of 39,047 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday which was the biggest one spike ever recorded in the state. The positivity rate (the number of people who test COVID-19 positive for every 100 tests done) was 22.7% which was much higher compared to 18.71% on Tuesday. Bengaluru is the hotspot with more than two-thirds of the total cases being recorded in the capital.
In the meeting, all districts complained of oxygen shortage and they were told that the state government is trying to address the shortage with the help of the union government. All the DCs were given permission to procure oxygen for medical needs from private industries.
‚ÄúThe Chief Minister also instructed to ensure judicious usage of oxygenated beds, ventilators and Remdesivir, which should be given only to the needy,‚ÄĚ a note by the CMO said.
The CM asked the Mysuru DC Rohini Sindhuri to take measures to fix the three out of units of the oxygen generating plant which are dysfunctional.
CM Yediyurappa also advised the ministers to donate one year of their salary and one month salary of Legislators amid the current situation. Following this, "We the ministers in Karnataka have decided to donate one year of our salary for COVID-19 relief work," state Revenue Minister R Ashoka said
Additionally, the chief minister said that the funds have been released for medical kits to COVID-19 patients, who are in home isolation and asked the DCs to distribute them. He also asked authorities to form panchayat level teams to monitor the health condition of patients in home isolation.