After the ongoing second COVID wave engulfed an enormous count of lives in the nation, experts predict that the third wave would be detrimental to the kids as well. Taking quick cognisance of this, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has asked authorities to establish pediatric COVID care wards. This move by the civic body comes after the Chief Minister asked all municipal bodies to enhance their preparedness for the third wave, which is expected to affect children.
6.80% of all infections in the age group of 10-20 in the current COVID wave
The Guardian Minister of Mumbai suburban district, who is also the Tourism Minister of the state, held a meeting with the BMC Mayor, Additional Municipal Commissioner and other top authorities to amp up the concerned measures. There, he stressed the need for specific interventions to battle the third anticipated wave. "Since last year, our jumbo covid care centres also have units of Covid +ve dialysis and maternity care as well. As the virus mutates and targets different age groups, our response to it must actively mutate as well," affirmed the minister.
According to the records released by the Public Health Department, individuals below the age of 50 make for around two-thirds of the cases in the state. While the highest proportion of cases is being witnessed in the age group of 31-40 (22.09%), 41-50 years and 21-30 age account for 18.15% and 17.51%, respectively.
In the current wave, 3.04% of infections are being recorded in the age group 0-10 while 6.80% cases come from the bracket of 10 to 20 years. Keeping this in mind, the anticipations around the effects of a third wave are being contemplated.
First of the pediatric COVID care wards to have 700 beds
The first of the pediatric COVID care wards will be established in the NESCO Jumbo Covid Care Centre in Goregaon, east suburb of Mumbai. It is expected that a total of 700 beds will be added here, 300 of which will be for a dedicated COVID care ward, encompassing the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). The PICU will have a total of 25 entities for newborns who might require immediate care. Additionally, the authorities are also augmenting stocks of medical essentials like Remdesivir and Tocilizumab.
"In the 2020 first wave, mostly the adult and senior citizens were affected. In the current second wave (from February 2021) young men/women and children are also getting affected. We have to be alert for the third wave Also we have to account for the fact that the vaccination drive has not yet been opened for the under-18 age groups," stated a senior BMC official. Further, the BMC is also deliberating over strict measures to prevent a third wave.
- With inputs from IANS