Thiruvananthapuram: With an increase in the Covid Test Positivity Rate (TPR) over the last few days, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced further restrictions in the State on Friday (July 23). During the last three days, the average test positivity rate is 12.1 percent. In 11 districts, the TPR is above 10 percent, with Malappuram district having the highest rate at 17 percent.
‘In the context of the Covid spread, Central and State Government Offices, Public Offices, Public Sector Undertakings, Companies, Commissions, and Corporation offices in Category A and B local bodies can function with upto 50 per cent staff and upto 25 per cent in Category C areas,’ Mr. Vijayan said.
In Category D areas with TPR rates above 15%, only essential services will operate. 50 percent of the staff in A & B categories and 75 percent in C should be involved in COVID mitigation activities, he said. ‘District collectors should take the initiative in giving employees responsibility for their work. Since only essential services are in the D category, most employees will be involved in prevention measures.’
‘Areas with a significant prevalence of a disease are known as clusters. At the same time, a micro-containment system will be introduced,’ he told reporters after the COVID-19 daily evaluation meeting.
The state has already been recognized as an effective vaccination state, and is at the forefront of zero waste and higher dose vaccination.
‘At least 60 per cent of the population in the community must be immunized to achieve herd immunity. A third wave is unlikely to occur if herd immunity is achieved to the required level by strictly following the Covid protocol.The third wave will not occur naturally. It is caused by the flaws in Covid control and failures in vaccine supply,’ he said.
Vijayan said that at the moment the state government was trying to vaccinate as many people as possible. He also suggested avoiding crowds where the delta variant of the virus can spread quite rapidly. A total of 17,518 new cases of COVID-19 with a TPR of 13.63 per cent were reported last Friday by the state. Vijayan said 1,77,09,529 people have been vaccinated, and 1,24,64,589 have received a single dose and 52,44,940 have received both doses.
According to him, people without smartphones and computers are vaccinated by registering with the help of ASHA activists. ‘So far, about 40,000 pregnant women have been vaccinated,’ he said. An initiative by the Health Department is aimed at vaccinating all pregnant women.