‘Little possibility of another severe wave’
Srinaga: For the first time since the Covid-19 wave hit, Kashmir will be all set to fight the illness with full might by the start of December this year. This milestone will be achieved by full vaccination of its population and extensive testing facilities everywhere, according to Dr Rouf Hussain Rather, Community Medicine Specialist and in charge of data analysis at the Divisional Covid Control Room Kashmir.
“We have vaccinated 85 percent of the population above 45 years of age so far. Currently we are vaccinating 30-40 thousand people every day. Our target is to maintain this rate, by which the entire 18 plus population will be fully vaccinated by early December,” Dr Rather told Kashmir Reader.
As of now, Kashmir has a mild presence of Covid-19 in the population. Less than 150 cases are being reported in a day in Kashmir. At the peak of the second wave, when Kashmir was testing between 10,000-15,000 persons a day, positive cases would be around 4,000.
In a meeting with LG Sinha on Friday, sources told Kashmir Reader, the administration has been directed to ramp up tests to full capacity.
Since the beginning of April, Jammu and Kashmir had been reeling under the second wave of Covid, recording 700 percent increase in active cases in the four weeks of April, from 2,874 cases on April 1 to 22,283 at the end of the month.
Dr Rather, who successfully predicted the end of the first and second wave months before it happened, also said that the virus is most likely going to be mild till October. Post this month, he said, the cases may go up again, but will be milder than in the second and first wave.
“So, this won’t pose any serious threats,” he said. “But another possibility, which is less likely to occur, is that there will be shifts in the virus, which can escalate the caseload. If people follow Covid appropriate behaviour, the possibility of this shift also diminishes.”
The best is to follow ways of prevention from getting infected, he said. This can be done by wearing double layer masks, maintaining social distancing, washing hands regularly, avoiding crowded places, and following all other Covid related SOPs.