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We can manage Covid better now: BSY

Express News Service

BENGALURU: In a minor cabinet rejig on Monday, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa allocated the health portfolio, held by B Sreeramulu, to Medical Education Minister K Sudhakar. “Having both departments under one minister will further streamline the government’s efforts to fight Covid-19,” Sudhakar told TNIE in an interview on Tuesday. Excerpts:

Medical education and health are two different departments. How will you handle both?
Health and medical education departments are integral to each other. Earlier, it was under one ministry and many expert committees have suggested that these departments should be under one minister for better coordination. District health officers would report to the health department and heads of medical colleges to the medical education department. This caused a lack of coordination, and now having both departments under one minister will further streamline the government’s efforts to fight Covid-19.

In March-April, there were four ministers dealing with Covid management. Now, you are alone.
After we started unlocking, cases started increasing in July, and the government had to work on a war-footing to deal with it. At that time, the CM had allocated work between ministers — one was setting up of Covid Care Centres, another handling private hospitals etc to ensure a quick turnaround. Now most of the efforts are streamlined.

The Congress has said this reshuffle amid the pandemic shows the government has failed.
The numbers speak. Karnataka on Sunday, recorded its lowest mortality rate and also its highest recovery rate since the pandemic broke out. The state recorded a mortality rate of 1.40 per cent, which fell from 2.08 per cent on July 20, and a recovery rate of 81.66 per cent, way higher than 35.29 per cent recorded on the same day in July. Opposition parties should stop doing politics over the pandemic, and should cooperate with the government.

There are many complaints of Covid-19 patients scouting for Remdesivir in the private market because some unscrupulous doctors were giving them 1-2 shots and selling the other four shots in the open market for up to Rs 10,000 per injection…

Government will take strict action if any such irregularities are found. Remdesivir is free of cost to patients admitted under the government quota, and whose oxygen saturation level falls under 85. The doctors decide on dosage and have to raise a requisition for the injection through the Arogya Mitra desk at any Covid hospital. A maximum of 6 vials of Remdesivir can be given, and costs around Rs 32,400 but is now made free for patients. Every hospital has an Arogya Mitra desk which is the help desk managed by SAST (Suvarna Arogya Suraksha Trust).

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