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No mucormycosis cases in Nagaland so far

By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: May 24, 2021 11:54 pm

Free treatment of Covid-19 patients in district hospitals to continue

(L-R) Shanavas C, Mmhonlumo Kikon, and Dr. Nyanthung Kikon while addressing a press conference in Kohima on Monday. (EM Images)

Our Correspondent
Kohima, May 24 (EMN):
Even as cases of mucormycosis, also known as black fungus, among Covid-19 patients are increasing in several Indian states, no such infection has been detected in Nagaland till date, informed state government’s spokesperson on Covid-19, Mmhonlumo Kikon on Monday.

Kikon, who is also Advisor of IT, Science and Technology and NRE, said this while addressing a press conference at the Secretariat’s conference hall along with deputy director, Directorate of Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Nyanthung Kikon and Principal Director of School Education, Shanavas C.

He said that the state has taken ‘abundant precautions’- declared mucormycosis as epidemic disease in Nagaland and has already communicated to the Ministry for procurement of drugs for treatment of the deadly infection.

‘The focus is on prevention of mucormycosis — control of large sugar in diabetes – and production of medicine to treat black fungus has been ramped up at the central level,’ he informed.

176 more Covid beds in Dimapur

On hospital beds for Covid patients in Nagaland, he informed that a 176-bedded Covid-19 facility would be in place at the Christian Institute of Health Sciences and Research (CIHSR) campus.

‘In spite of financial constraints, the government has prioritised the protection of the lives of people and health of its citizens,’ he said.

Kikon also assured that essential medical services would be offered to people without disruption. He further clarified that Covid-19 treatment in district hospitals is free and it would continue.

On Tuesday (May 25), Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio along with some HPC members will inaugurate 30 beds at Police Refferral Hospital, Dimapur. They would also visit the 176-bedded hospital at CIHSR and the pressure swing adsorption (PSA) oxygen generation plant in Dimapur would be operational on Tuesday.

No shortage of oxygen cylinders

The total number of oxygen cylinders of all types, including concentrators, that are available in the state is 1558 and 980 oxygen cylinders are available at Chümoukedima. Meanwhile, 800 more are expected to arrive from Ahmedabad, Kikon informed.

‘People need not worry about oxygen; we have sufficient oxygen to deal with the matter,’ he added.

Positivity cases expected to dip

‘In another two weeks, the Covid positivity rate in the state would come down as it is already going down,’ Kikon observed.

“From 20 days before, it has gone down to 18%. Positivity rate in the state is coming down from the first week of May till last week, which is a positive sign. Prior to that, the rise in cases was drastic. State government has therefore taken measures including total lockdown and ‘brought down’ the rising of positive cases,” he added.

Meanwhile, he clarified that the state-wide total lockdown was decided based on transmission level, sample positivity rate and bed occupancy in Covid facilities. He added that lockdown was imposed because of the “overwhelming increase” in the number of Covid-19 cases in the state.

He also updated preparedness in rural areas, highlighting sensitisation, ensured community surveillance on Covid-19, activation of village task force or village disaster management authority.

He went on to inform that the state government has also planned to expand rapid testing in health and wellness centres immediately, ensure that there are community Covid Care Centres in all the sub-divisions and blocks, and isolation beds in all hospitals like CHC and PHC with provision for oxygen facility.

Over 2000 random samples tested

The advisor iterated that random testing is being conducted to enable Health department and district task forces to identify and contain the spread of Covid-19 in various districts.

‘Till date, the state has tested over 2000 random samples with a positivity rate of 20%. The highest positivity rate was found in Kohima,’ he said.

While informing that random testing would continue, he said that it depends on availability of human resources; respective DTFs have been empowered to engage final year medical students and interns through application.

The state government has already ensured that they will be posting 56 medical officers in the junior grade category immediately to fill the gaps and 12 senior grade post categories are under active consideration.

He further said that testing is one of the priorities and random testing is considered one of the most effective strategies in the attempt to contain the spread of the virus.

More than 1 lakh vaccine doses available

Around 1,18,050 (1.18 lakh) doses of Covid-19 vaccine are still available with the state, which is being distributed across the districts, he revealed, while expressing hope that the state would be able to vaccinate majority of its citizens in a phased manner.

‘State government has already taken austerity measures to provide free vaccines to citizens and would be channelling the resources towards procurement of Covid-19 vaccine,’ Kikon informed.

Centre announces 8500 vials of Remdesivir for Nagaland

Kikon said that the State government has received 1400 remdisivir vials so far from the Health Ministry. The quality was provided based on the projection as per data submitted by the state, he added.

Meanwhile, the union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilisers, DV Sadananda Gowda, on Monday announced that additional 22.17 lakh vials of remdesivir have been allocated to all the States and Union Territories for the period of May 23 to the 30th, and Nagaland’s share from April 21 to May 30 is 8,500 vials.

As for other states from the Northeast, Meghalaya and Tripura will get 10,000 vials each, 6,000 vials each for Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram, 7500 vials for Sikkim, 11,500 vials for Manipur, and 1,02,000 vials for Assam.

‘Earlier, 76.70 lakh vials of the drug were (available) made to all states till May 23, thus total 98.87 lakh vials of Remdesivir have been allocated across the country so far,’ he tweeted.

It may be mentioned that the ministry had earlier advised state governments to place adequate purchase orders with the marketing companies immediately, if they have not already done yet, for the quantity that they want to purchase out of allocation for the State/ UTs as per supply chain in close co-ordination with liaison officers of the companies.

By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: May 24, 2021 11:54:25 pm