Shortage of PPE, masks in Kerala amid COVID-19 crisis

Shortage of PPE, masks in Kerala amid COVID-19 crisis
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Thiruvananthapuram: Acute shortage of personal protective gear, including masks and gloves, for healthcare personnel has been reported in the state amid COVID-19 pandemic. Medicines for other illnesses are also short in supply.

Healthcare personnel working in the district and taluk hospitals do not have sufficient personal protective equipment (PPE), and N95 masks. Also, hospitals in Idukki and Wayanad districts do not have sufficient number of staff.

Those working at the check-posts, railway stations, and airports do not have enough safety equipment either. Sanitary workers are also facing the same predicament.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has asked the health department to take immediate steps to ensure the availability of PPE and medicines.

Complaints have also been raised that some personnel were not following the safety guidelines, while visiting houses to conduct checks.

Scarcity of medicines for other diseases are also reported from most districts.

No immediate pass for those from hotspots

Kerala CM Pinarayi has directed the home department not to immediately issue pass for those coming from hotspots (containment zone) in other states. They can be allotted passes after some days.

The CM also asked the police to be alert as people were unlawfully entering Kerala from Karnataka.

Not safe to cross over into districts

Intelligence ADGP T K Vinod Kumar has informed the CM that people from Wayanad, Kasaragod, and Kannur districts were moving across the border and this could lead to disease transmission. People were found to be travelling in groups near the Idukki border areas as well.

Principal secretary Sarada Muraleedharan also informed the CM that the local bodies were finding it difficult to track down the people, who came via check-posts.

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