Second COVID-19 wave in Maharashtra likely in Jan-Feb; govt asks authorities to not get complacent on testing

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Centre issues SOPs for approaching festival season; India's COVID-19 cases rise to 66.8 lakh
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In a circular, the Maharashtra govt also asked local authorities to ensure there are testing labs in each district and municipal corporation limits

An health worker helps another wear personal protective equipment before testing students for coronavirus at a college in Jhargaon village, outskirts of Gauhati. AP

Mumbai: Anticipating a second COVID-19 wave in January-February, the Maharashtra government has asked the authorities to ensure there is no complacency in testing and said labs should be functional in every district and municipal corporation limits.

A circular from the government’s health services directorate dated 11 November said a second wave of the pandemic is likely in January-February.

The second wave is expected based on what is happening in Europe, it said. The circular said since October, the number of COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra has showed signs of decline.

The second wave of the virus has hit many countries, especially those in Europe, it said. The circular said there should be no complacency in coronavirus testing and all labs will remain functional as per Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) guidelines.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), there should be 140 tests per 10 lakh population, it said. For this, there should be testing labs in each district and municipal corporation limits, the government document said.

The circular said the need of the hour is to celebrate a firecracker-free Diwali keeping in mind the health interest of COVID-19 patients and those with breathing problems.

Talking about COVID-19 protocols, it said wearing masks when outdoors, frequent hand wash, disinfection of surfaces, physical distancing, avoiding spitting, and smoking in public places are necessary measures to curb the spread of the infection.

It also advised people to avoid unnecessary travel and not to take stress. Till 12 November, Maharashtra has recorded 17,36,329 COVID-19 cases and 45,682 deaths.

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