Karnataka's fight against coronavirus has now become a tough uphill battle as the state records a steep rise in cases. The state Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa met with medical experts and health authorities from around the state on Wednesday. Following the meeting, the government is considering monitored home isolation for mild to asymptomatic cases.
Apart from cases hitting a record high in the past few days, reports have been emerging from Bengaluru and other parts of the state where hospitals are turning away ailing patients. As hospital beds set back the state's fight against the virus, the government is considering alternative strategies as a back-up.
A full-scale lockdown in Karnataka again?
The Karnataka government at this point is looking at all possible strategies to contain and manage the contagious coronavirus without imposing a full-scale lockdown in the state. A lockdown seems to be the government's last resort. However, the rise in cases isn't making way for an optimistic situation. COVID-19 cases in Bengaluru alone have already crossed 5,000. Overall in Karnataka, there are over 16,500 positive cases as on Thursday morning.
On Wednesday, the CM met with officials and experts in the state— Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar, Home Minister Basavaraja Bommai, Health Minister B Sriramulu and Chief Secretary TM Vijayabhaskar, BBMP Commissioner BH Anil Kumar and other medical experts.
The meeting was called to discuss infection control and the rapid spread of the disease in the state. Following the meeting, the Karnataka government has been considering home isolation for mild and asymptomatic cases in the state. Many states including the national capital have already announced monitored home isolation for mild to asymptomatic cases.
At the meeting, experts also opined on the possibility of administering telemedicine for low-risk patients. They had discussed the use of Tele ICU (Intensive Care Units) and providing training about treatment protocols in this regard. These approaches could reduce the burden on hospital beds, allowing critical patients to avail adequate treatment in time. The meeting had led to a decision of increasing staff strength at the contact tracing level as increasingly more positive cases have been detected through contact tracing.
The SOP on the matter and an official announcement on whether home isolation will be mandated for mild to asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 are awaited and will be published as and when received.