It is possible that a more transmissible mutant variant can emerge in the COVID-19 third wave in Kerala, Health Minister Veena George told the state Assembly on Monday, June 7. "Those who had not been vaccinated could be more susceptible to serious disease and death. The government was trying to get everyone vaccinated as fast as possible and children who had not been vaccinated at all could remain vulnerable in the third wave. Hence the government was paying special attention to augmenting paediatric treatment facilities across the state," the minister added, reports the Hindu.
Veena George also told the Assembly that as part of the state's preparation for the third wave, special measures were being taken to vaccinate all chronically ill and bed-ridden persons and those in palliative care. "Steps are being taken to supply the vaccine to camps of migrant laborers as well," she said. The minister was responding to questions by MLAs CK Hareendran, NK Akbar, Linto Joseph, and PS Supal. The minister also said that testing would be intensified and if new case clusters were discovered, strict curbs in the movement would be imposed. Meanwhile, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan after a review meeting said that the vaccination of the 60-plus age group has picked up pace and the government was attempting to finish the entire process as soon as possible.
The state on June 7 recorded 9313 COVID-19 cases taking the number of active cases in the state to 1,47,830. Kerala has extended the lockdown to June 16 as the state continues to see a high caseload. The lockdown which began on May 8 was scheduled to end on June 9.