Amid fears of a possible third wave of Covid-19 and the prevailing outbreak, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya will be visiting Kerala on 16 August to review the coronavirus situation.

The Union Health Minister will meet Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan of Kerala and State Health Minister Veena George, as per the revised visit plan shared by the Union Health Ministry.

Mandaviya will be accompanied by the Director of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and other officials of the Health Ministry, informed the sources.

Kerala is reporting more than half of the total Covid-19 cases in India.

Kerala Health Minister, Veena George reacted to the COVID situation in the state saying, “We have requested for more vaccines. Even though cases are higher than last week, hospitals and ICU occupancy are comparatively less in the count. That shows that the virus situation is not in panic mode. We are taking all possible measures to control the virus.”

According to the latest data given by the Union Ministry of Health, 35,743 patients have been recovered during the last 24 hours and India reported 38,667 new cases in the last 24 hours. The weekly positivity rate remains below 5 per cent, currently at 2.05 per cent. Daily positivity rate at 1.73 per cent; less than 3 per cent for the last 19 days.

Amid a rise in COVID-19 cases and in view of approaching festivals, Kerala government had decided to implement new guidelines from Wednesday and enforce “special intensified stringent” lockdown restrictions in the panchayats or urban wards wherein the Weekly Infection Population Ratio (WIPR) is above 8.

The government has also decided that all senior citizens above 60 years of age who have not received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine shall be vaccinated before August 15.

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