Kohima: Urging people not to panic, the Nagaland government on Saturday said it was fully prepared if a fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic hits the state.
Addressing a press conference, state health commissioner and secretary Y Kikheto Sema said the state was fully prepared with better infrastructure and manpower to fight the emerging challenges.
“A sharp rise in COVID-19 cases has been reported in the country in the last four weeks, but Nagaland has not reported any case,” he said. The government is in touch with the states, including Assam, where cases have been increasing, he added.
There is no need to panic as the fourth wave of the pandemic is not as severe as the first and second waves, Sema claimed. Nagaland was ill-prepared and caught by surprise during the first wave of the pandemic, he said, maintaining that the state’s health infrastructure has been revamped to a large extent.
“We are fully prepared to face any challenge and there is no need to panic as far as Nagaland is concerned,” Sema said. The last COVID-19 case was detected in the state on February 11, he said. In all, the state reported 35,988 cases and 856 deaths, the official said.
A mock drill on COVID preparedness will be conducted on April 10 and 11, he said. “We will not allow our people to be victims of the virus-like the first two waves, because we now have better infrastructure and manpower,” Sema said.
Nodal Officer for Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) Nyanthung Kikon said the state was testing all Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) cases for COVID-19.
Meanwhile, Sema said the recruitment of the teachers and other staff for the state’s first medical college in Kohima would be completed by the end of this month, and all attempts were being made to ready the infrastructure by June.
Representatives of the National Medical Council (NMC) have inspected the works for the college twice in the last three months, and the final approval for the commencement of academic activities is awaited.