Delhi Health Minister Satyendra Jain spoke exclusively to India TV on Sunday, as the positive cases of coronavirus continue to rise across the national capital and across the nation. Speaking for India TV's Swasthya Sammelan 2021, the Delhi health minister said the situation is grim in Delhi as compared to last year. Earlier, one or two people from a locality used to be infected, now we are witnessing cases wherein complete families are found to be coronavirus positive. Speaking further, the Delhi health minister said, "This is Delhi's fourth wave, though it is the second one in the nation. Delhi is a compact area and so it is easier to monitor the situation and conduct mass testings."
On being asked about the availability of beds at hospitals, Jain said, "Almost 50 per cent of beds are occupied in Delhi today and we have doubled the number of beds at various hospitals, seeing the rising number of cases in the national capital. We are still arranging for more beds."
Explaining the importance to keep coronavirus at bay, the Delhi health minister said, "Both - vaccinations and testing are equally important to stop the spread of coronavirus. We are in the process of conducting as many tests as possible, along with vaccinations."
"We believe all adults should be eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccine, however, we do not have enough vaccines for such kind of drive, we need more vaccinations. As of now in Delhi, we have vaccine stock for nearly 6 days," he added.
"Vaccinations should be allowed at various camps and other centres as well and not just at laboratories and vaccination centres," he said.
On being questioned about those testing positive for coronavirus even after being vaccinated, the Delhi health minister said, "It was never said that a person who is vaccinated against the coronavirus will never catch the infection. Even those who have received both the jabs need to wear face masks and follow all COVID-19 protocols."
"We have seen a decline in the number of patients who have tested positive for coronavirus for the second time," Jain said.
"More than treatment, it is important to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus. Prevention is better than care," the Delhi health minister said.
Meanwhile, Delhi recorded 7,897 fresh cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, while 39 more people died due to the infection, taking the death toll to 11,235, according to the city Health Department. The positivity rate also mounted to 10.21 per cent, breaching the 10 per cent for the first time this year.
The positivity rate mid-November last year had stood above 15 per cent.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said the state government was not in favour of imposing lockdown in the national capital, but 'if the health system collapsed then lockdown would be the only option'.
"I will request all citizens of Delhi to follow Covid-19 protection measures. I will also appeal to the people to go to the hospital only when it is urgent.
"The Delhi government assures you that healthcare workers will visit you and guide you for home isolation. Come to hospital only if the case is serious," Chief Minister said while addressing a press conference.
With this, prohibition of all types of gatherings, reduced size of weddings and funerals, running of public transport at half seating capacity and scaled down presence in government offices were some of the restrictions imposed by the Delhi government on Saturday amid a surge in COVID-19 cases. Except this, all Delhi government and private schools will also remain closed till April 30, it said.
A negative RT-PCR report, not older than 72 hours prior to undertaking a journey, will be compulsory for persons arriving from Maharashtra to Delhi by air. Those found without a negative report will have to remain quarantine for 14 days, the order said.