New Delhi: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan warned people not to be complacent in the fight against coronavirus. The health minister said that having the COVID-19 vaccine does not mean one should relax. Harsh Vardhan asserted Monday that preventive measures must be followed now and in the near future as well.
These remarks were made by Vardhan, also the Chairman of the Indian Red Cross Society (IRCS) at a function. He presided over the distribution of masks and soaps among various Transport Unions, a health ministry statement said.
“I am very happy to be a part of the initiative of distributing masks as part of the COVID-19 response activities. This is part of a series of such distributions across India. In Delhi itself, we have distributed masks in railway stations, sabji mandis and other places,” Vardhan was quoted as saying.
The health minister acknowledged the efforts of the Indian Red Cross Society. He emphasized the need of following COVID-appropriate behaviour even after vaccine development. He said, the government has already started the largest vaccination drive in the world.
“But having the vaccine does not mean that we should be complacent. In fact, all the preventive measures must be followed by all of us now and in the near future, as well. Considering this, it is praiseworthy that IRCS is continuing the distribution of masks from the prevention perspective,” Vardhan stated.
Transport drivers and helpers travel throughout India are vulnerable to the infection. The masks being distributed by the IRCS will be of great help to them, added Vardhan.
Speaking on the COVID-19 situation, Vardhan said India has one of the highest recovery rates in the world. “Positive cases are also declining and stand at 1.48 lakh as of today. From one lab in January 2020, we now have 2,373 labs (for testing coronavirus). We have a capacity to conduct more than a million tests a day. We have completed 20 crore cumulative tests. This is a result of ‘whole of Government’ and ‘whole of Society’ approach,” Vardhan stated.
On the ongoing vaccination drive in India, Vardhan said more than 58 lakh beneficiaries have been vaccinated till now. “Many people are trying to spread misinformation and rumours related to vaccine. I appeal to the people to not believe in any such rumours,” Vardhan said.