The Karnataka State Road Transportation Corporation has built a two-storey hospital in Jayanagar for child COVID-19 patients. The hospital was inaugurated by Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Sunday, and has a capacity of 50 beds. A total of ₹99 lakh was spent on hospital renovations, with ₹35 lakh coming from the MP’s grant by Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya and ₹66 lakh was sanctioned by the Karnataka State Disaster Management Fund. “The hospital has its own oxygen room and a 24×7 generator facility. The hospital also has earmarked space for its laboratory,” a release said.
According to Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare Mansukh Mandaviya, 6 states and Union Territories have vaccinated 100% of their adult population with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. On the list of states were Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Goa, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Ladakh, and Lakshadweep. “Congratulations to these States & UTs for administering the first #COVID19 vaccine dose to 100% of the adult population. Special appreciation for the health workers in these regions for their diligence & commitment,” Mandaviya’s office tweeted.
The beginning of 2021 marked a hopeful period of receding COVID-19 infection numbers, however relaxations in the rules fueled by the deadly Delta variant led to a marked increase in cases. The United States is now averaging about 160,000 cases and about 1,500 deaths daily. Thought the country has multiple safe, effective vaccines available to the public, the vast majority of cases and deaths are a result of citizens who refuse to get vaccinated. States like South Carolina and Florida have seen the highest transmission rates due to very low vaccination among the population.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has issued strict COVID-19 regulations ahead of one of the biggest Ganesh Chaturti celebrations in the country. As several relaxations have already been made in the last few months, authorities have been on high alert during the festival season. Kishori Pednekar, the Mayor of Mumbai, consulted with Mumbai mandals’ representatives before creating the guidelines. For public Ganapati mandals, not more than 10 people are allowed to bring Ganesha idols, and the size of the idol should not be more than 4 feet. Permitted devotees must be fully vaccinated at least 15 days prior to the day of the festival. No processions will be allowed. Artificial lakes have been created at 174 places in 24 different divisions for safe, socially distanced immersion.
With several different COVID-19 restrictions being lifted across the state, the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) is planning to revert to pre-pandemic train timings. However, these changes are likely to be made only after the Bengaluru City Police lifts its prohibitory orders, which are currently in place till 13th September, 2021. These orders prohibit the assembly of four or more persons in public areas with the exception of transportation hubs like railway stations, bus stands, and airports. Currently, the Bengaluru Metro’s timings are from 7:00am to 8:00pm.
Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories on Tuesday announced that it has supplied hospitals all over India with the first dose of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine. The pharmaceutical company had earlier suspended supply of the first dose due to supply constraints from the Russian Direct Investment Fund. As announced by our partners, the RDIF and Panacea Biotec, supply of the second dose component manufactured by Panacea Biotec has now commenced. Dr. Reddy’s has initiated supply of the first dose component to partner hospitals all over India followed by equivalent quantities of the second dose component,” a Dr. Reddy’s spokesperson said.
India witnessed 44,658 new cases of COVID-19 and 496 deaths in the last 24 hours. Kerala contributed 30,077 of those cases, and currently has a test positivity rate of 19.3%. Since most of the State’s cases have been mildly symptomatic ones, patients have been able to home quarantine, thus ensuring that public health infrastructure is not overwhelmed. However, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya took to Twitter to announce on Thursday that 50% of India’s eligible population had received at least one dose of the vaccine. “India achieves unprecedented milestone! 50 per cent of the eligible population inoculated with the first dose of #COVID19 vaccine. Keep it up India. Let us fight Corona,” he tweeted.
The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Pallike (BBMP) has ordered that Ganesh Chaturti festivities be permitted in public places only for three days. This goes against the order given by the Karnataka Government, which allowed 5 days of festivities in the state. “Ganesha festival will not be allowed for more than three days in Bengaluru city. There should not be a procession while bringing the idol or during immersion,” said BBMP chief commissioner Gaurav Gupta in a circular. The measures have been taken to prevent large gatherings and curb the spread of COVID-19 infections. Gupta also stated that plaster of Paris idols have been banned, and citizens should immerse dolls made of biodegradable materials either at home or in mobile tankers provided by BBMP.
Bengaluru-based scientists have warned that Karnataka could see 7 times more children infected in the third wave if the Government does not strictly enforce COVID-19 protocol. “The study is not to scare but to prepare. Even if they develop Covid-19 infection, most of the kids would not require a hospital stay”, said Dr. Giridhara R Babu, a professor and head of Life Course Epidemiology at the Public Health Foundation of India. Measures such as increased vaccination, crowd control, mask-wearing and social distancing are crucial to prevent the third wave. “I have thanked them [expert committee] for the report and will discuss it with my technical committee members. We’ll try to implement their valuable suggestions if we have not taken those points in consideration. We want to prevent 3rd wave,” Karnataka Health Minister K Sudhakar said last month.
Newly released documents regarding the United States’ research into the origins of the Wuhan coronavirus have revealed several important details. EcoHealth Alliance, A US-based health organization which conducted research into the virus and the involvement of the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, has been at the forefront of the inquiry. The Government’s bat coronavirus grant gave EcoHealth Alliance a total of $3.1 million, including $599,000 that the Wuhan Institute of Virology utilised partly to identify and alter bat coronaviruses likely to infect humans. President Joe Biden called for an investigation months ago, but on August 27th announced that the study was inconclusive. Research into the matter is ongoing.