Chandigarh, Apr 13 (MNN) Reacting to allegations levelled by former Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal as “baseless and political motivated”, Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu has said that the state government was working as per the Centre’s advisories on tackling coronavirus and taking suitable corrective steps, as required.
He said that the Akali leader was “trying to malign the image and confidence of the state’s medical fraternity for free publicity”, claiming that her party Shiromani Akali Dal had lost public credibility and support.
Sidhu said that the immensely useful feedback would surely help the state manage the corona surge in the state.
He said that contact tracing in SAS Nagar was the highest in Punjab and that 105 per cent of targeted COVID-19 testing had been achieved in Patiala while she had claimed it was much lower than the target.
Contact tracing in Ludhiana was 13 per case, in Patiala 14 and in SAS Nagar 23. Contact tracing was getting a boost with the involvement of personnel from other government departments.
Asserting that RT-PCR labs were not required in every district, he said that the Punjab districts were attached to 7 RT-PCR test labs and no district was more than one or one-and-half hours distance from such labs.
Testing in the state — about 35,000 to 40,000 per day – would be increased to 50,000 per day in this week only. The main thrust of testing was districts that had borne the brunt of coronavirus.
All district hospitals have been provided with TrueNat RT-PCR machines for quick tests and results within 1-2 hours.
The state has more than 4,000 Level-2 beds in the government Sector and around 8,000 beds in the private sector. The bed occupancy at L-2 was only 25 per cent.