NMMC braces for second wave as COVID-19 cases rise sharply

Civic body intensifies awareness drives, ramps up testing

With COVID-19 cases rising in Navi Mumbai post Deepavali, nodal and health officers are gearing up to tackle a second wave.

Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) chief Abhijit Bangar has directed the officers to prepare to open COVID Care Centres (CCCs) even at a short notice of two days.

The civic body has intensified awareness drives and all 23 testing centres have been asked to ramp up their capacity for early detection of cases.

Mr. Bangar has called for testing at railway stations and giving priority to hawkers, shopkeepers, autorickshaw drivers and drivers of public transport vehicles. He has also directed vigilance teams to take stern action against those who violate guidelines. “Testing centres at APMC market and MIDC area have also been asked to increase testing,” Mahendra Konde, PRO of NMMC, said.

NMMC has 6,098 COVID-19 beds, of which 4,853 are vacant, while 9 of its 13 CCCs were temporarily shut owing to a dip in cases and admissions.

“NMMC is ready to face the second wave and citizens are urged to follow guidelines. Cases have risen in the last few days, but it is early to confirm a second wave. The impact of Deepavali will be known only next week as the incubation period ranges from five to 10 days. Factors like a dip in temperature also need to be considered,” Mr. Bangar said.

COVID-19 cases in Navi Mumbai crossed 100 for the first time on May 30 with 114 cases. The highest single-day spike of 477 cases was recorded on August 20. A surge was feared post Ganesh Chaturthi, but cases dipped to below 100 after five months.

On November 9, only 72 cases were recorded and the lowest spike of 62 was reported on November 16. However, cases began breaching the 100-mark from November 18, when 131 cases were recorded.

The recovery rate has now gone up to 95%, while the case fatality rate has dropped to 2%.

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