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Vikash Sharma

Cuttack: In what could come as a major relief for people in Odisha, possibility of a second COVID-19 wave in the State is unlikely, said Dr Jayant Panda, Technical Spokesperson of the State Health Department on Saturday.

While talking to reporters on the sidelines of unveiling of website of Cuttack SCB Medical College and Hospital, Panda said, the daily Coronavirus numbers have considerably dropped in the State.

From 4000-5000 cases, the daily COVID-19 case load has now come down to 400. This shows that the efforts of Odisha government to flatten the COVID curve, which began some eight months back, has been successful, said Panda.

“Odisha has been successful in effectively tackling the COVID-19 wave compared to other States in the country. The second wave is not likely as we are extra vigilant and are observing all the protocols strictly. All the festivals, be it Dusshera or Diwali, were held without much fanfare while several other festivals were cancelled this year,” said Panda.

According to him, a lot of people in the State including Covid warriors have made lot of sacrifices. "We had anticipated that a second wave of the virus cases might erupt in the State in the month of December, but now it seems unlikely that the cases will rise further in the State."

However, everybody needs to be cautious and follow all the prescribed norms, practice social distancing, wear masks and maintain regular hand hygiene, he said.

People in the State need to be careful at least till February or until a vaccine come to the market. During the past sero surveys, it was observed that some parts and a majority of population in the State had developed COVID-19 antibodies. As vaccine is likely in few weeks time, it will be the last leg in the ongoing fight against Coronavirus, Panda said.

“The vaccine will be crucial to break the COVID-19 chain and it might help in achieving herd immunity in the State. It is our target that the COVID-19 vaccine is likely to be administered as per the protocols fixed by the State government by this month end,” he added.

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