Hyderabad: Taking a serious note of the Covid-19 death of a government teacher in Kothagudem district and 71 school students from across the State becoming asymptomatic coronavirus cases, the Telangana High Court on Wednesday asked the state government to complete vaccination of all teaching and non-teaching staff in schools within two months.
"All government schools and some private institutions have commenced physical classes, as per your own details, yet vaccination has not been administered to all the 4.93 lakh teaching and non-teaching staff. There is an impending need to vaccinate the remaining staff. As children interact with them, there is a possibility that they would get affected. Though children are asymptomatic, they will be carriers to their houses, which may lead to community spread. Hence, this court wants completion of the vaccination process to teaching and non-teaching staff within two months", the court ordered.
A division bench, comprising acting Chief Justice M. S. Ramachandra and Justice T. Vinod Kumar was dealing with PILs related to Covid-19 management in the state.
The bench directed the government to ramp up RTPCR testing as there has been a steep decline in the tests.
Dr. G. Srinivas Rao, director of public health, informed the court that the government’s special vaccination drive for teachers and non-teaching staff in all schools has so far covered 96 per cent of them, including students above 18 years of age. He submitted that only 71 asymptomatic positive cases had been identified from the two lakh samples that were collected for the test.
The court directed the government to complete vaccination to the entire state population within the next three months.
According to Dr. Srinivas Rao, 22 per centage of people were yet to get their second dose out of the 2.08 lakh, who have taken one shot. Around 95 per cent of GHMC population has been vaccinated, he said.
The court slammed the government and the director of public health for not placing details about the availability of pediatrics infrastructure as if there is a third wave the most prone would be children. It said that despite reminders from the court, the government has not placed details before it. Justice Rao cautioned the government against further lethargy and warned of dire consequences if the details were not submitted by September 30.
The bench expressed anguish over the Union health ministry’s lackadaisical attitude with regard to the inclusion of life-saving drugs meant to treat Covid-19 in the national list of essential medicines, despite the recommendation of ICMR. It sought such an inclusion by October 31, failing which union health ministry officials would have to face the consequences”....