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Covid-19’s second wave has a stronger impact in northeast India.

Covid-19's second wave has a stronger impact in northeast India

Covid-19’s second wave: The eight northeastern states coped efficiently with the first wave of Covid-19 last year. But now face a more difficult struggle against the pandemic’s second wave than other states.

According to Covid-19 data released by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry on Monday. All eight northeastern states — Sikkim (72.24 percent), Mizoram (74.58 percent), Nagaland (74.90 percent), Meghalaya (77.10 percent), Manipur (81.41 percent), Arunachal Pradesh (85.54 percent), Assam (85.97 percent), and Tripura (86.17 percent) — have recovery rates that are significantly lower than the national average.

Four states — Nagaland (1.68%), Sikkim (1.65%), Meghalaya (1.60%), and Manipur (1.59%) — have Covid-19-related mortality rates that are higher than the national average of 1.17 percent.

However, the four remaining states — Tripura (1%), Assam (0.81%), Arunachal Pradesh (0.43%), and Mizoram (0.31%) — fare better.

Local health officials attributed the region’s deteriorating Covid-19’s second wave situation to the holding of the various local body and Assembly elections, a lack of seriousness about the disease among a segment of the population, governments delaying tough measures to prevent its spread, and patients seeking admission in hospitals and Covid Care Centers at the final stage.

According to an Assam health official, a significant number of fatalities occurred in the state owing to home isolation or delayed reporting in hospitals.

“There are several instances of individuals being brought to the hospital at the eleventh hour when their oxygen saturation becomes dangerously low or when other catastrophic issues develop. We are reducing home isolation and putting a greater focus on institutional quarantine “the health official, who requested anonymity.

All northern states are likewise experiencing severe shortages of Covid vaccination, with barely 15% to 18% of residents receiving one dosage so far.

Covid-19’s 2nd wave hits northeast India harder

Apart from the day and night curfews and ‘lockdowns,’ all eight northeastern states have implemented a variety of measures to halt the spread of the coronavirus, including the closure or restriction of government, semi-government, private offices, educational institutions, commercial and business establishments, and the prohibition of public transportation and all types of gatherings.

With various origins and consequences, physicians, researchers, and social activists have proposed organizing research groups to conduct an in-depth examination of the illness throughout the region’s four tribal-dominated states – Mizoram, Meghalaya, Nagaland, and Arunachal Pradesh.

Prominent physician, Pradip Bhowmik remarked that “the second wave” has seen “many patients impacted by pneumonia and other ailments during the post-Covid era.”

“In comparison to the last wave, the coronavirus has infected a significant number of young adults and children. The second wave is very slow to recover and has a higher fatality rate in the region “‘He said.

Bhowmik, a hepatitis specialist who has worked on the illness in northeastern regions and Bangladesh, further said that Indian strains of the virus are more hazardous than those seen in the United Kingdom and Brazil. He further stated that though tribal immunity is usually superior genetically, they are equally susceptible to Covid-19, demanding more research.

Mizoram reported its first Covid-19 death on October 28, 2020, six months after Assam reported its first and India reported its first in Karnataka seven months later, has recently formed a study panel to examine the causes of the contagious disease’s spread, state Health and Family Welfare Secretary R. Lalramnghaka said.

Covid-19’s 2nd wave hits northeast India harder

The Meghalaya government has also formed an 11-member consultative committee chaired by Chief Secretary M.S. Rao to recommend ways to raise awareness about preventive measures, develop a strategy for dealing with the surge in Covid-19’s second wave positive cases, and increase vaccination coverage, particularly among vulnerable groups.

In response to the increase in Covid cases, the Tripura government this week nominated two senior IAS officials — Shailesh Kumar Yadav and Vishal Kumar, both of whom are physicians turned bureaucrats — to handle Covid in four districts each.

The Assam government stated Monday that it would continue to execute the “Assam Community Surveillance Program-Phase III” this year, which would include medical teams visiting every family in villages to monitor Covid cases. The four-month program will begin on Tuesday.

A 23-year-old woman who returned to Manipur from the United Kingdom in March became the region’s first coronavirus case. She was also the first person in the area to recover. The region’s first coronavirus fatality occurred on April 10, 2020, in the Hailakandi area of southern Assam, when a middle-aged man who had been overseas died.

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Written by Ankur J Kakoti

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