Chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Saturday ordered Covid tests to be increased to at least 60,000 per day.
The statement comes amid projections that Covid cases will double in about 64 days at the current growth rate. At present, the Covid tests are in the range of 45,000 to 49,000 per day.
Chairing a Covid review meeting, the CM directed the health department to undertake priority sentinel testing for patients at government and private hospitals, travellers at entry points, government offices, industries, labour colonies, staff at marriage palaces, restaurants, pubs, bars, gyms etc.
Amarinder also directed the health department to gear up for full utilisation of the additional vaccine supply, of which he had been assured by the Union health minister.
Noting that more than half of the eligible population of the state had already received one dose of vaccine, with the entire available stock being used without any wastage, the CM said he had, during his meeting with the Union health minister earlier this week, sought immediate supply of 55 lakh doses to inoculate Punjab’s eligible population. He had been assured of increased supplies, said Amarinder.
Stressing that there was no doubt regarding vaccine effectiveness, the CM urged all eligible persons to come forward to get themselves vaccinated.
According to a study to monitor Covid-19 vaccine effectiveness conducted by Dr Rajesh Kumar, former head of School of Public Health, PGIMER, Chandigarh, it has been found that vaccine has been effective in reducing positivity by 95%, hospitalisation by 96% and deaths by 98%, the meeting was informed.