Panaji, Aug 9 : In the wake of increasing number of coronavirus cases in Goa, Health Minister Vishwajit Rane has said that there is a need to remain vigilant in the next "45 to 60 days", even as he appealed to people to visit hospitals and other health facilities only in case of emergencies.
The state on Sunday recorded 506 COVID-19 cases.
Rane's appeal to people to not throng to hospitals, comes at a time when as many as 23 doctors and 18 nurses at the Goa Medical College, have tested positive over the last few days.
"People should visit hospitals only in case of emergencies... We need to keep vigil for the next 45-60 days," Rane said.
When asked if the state was peaking in terms of the Covid-19 positivity rate, Rane said that there was no way to "predict" a peak in Covid infections.
In a bid to insulate members of the medical fraternity from coming in contact with the dreaded virus, Rane also said that antigen treatment of new patients would soon be made mandatory before they are administered treatment.
"We are also encouraging home quarantine of asymptomatic patients, which will further reduce the load on the health infrastructure," Rane also said.
According to the current SOP, symptomatic patients are being treated at the Employees State Insurance hospital in Margao, while asymptomatic patients are admitted to the numerous Covid care centres set up by the state government. Home quarantine of asymptomatic patients is only allowed following permission from the regional deputy collectors.
Rane also said that a second designated Covid facility -- to treat symptomatic patients -- would be set up in the precincts of the sub district hospital in South Goa's Ponda area.
"Doctors will be taking charge of this new Covid facility in 48 hours," Rane said, adding that patients suffering from generic ailments presently admitted to the sub district hospital are being transferred to other medical facilities in the area.
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