Srinagar: Doctors have warned of an early third wave as COVID protocols go for a toss during ongoing marriage season in Kashmir
An expert panel set up by an institute under the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has predicted a third wave of COVID-19 anytime between September and October.
As per the panel, children, who were least affected during the last two waves, will be vulnerable this time around.
Doctors in Kashmir have cautioned people to remain alert and strictly adhere to COVID-19 protocols.
“We see marriage functions are being held and people don’t follow the guidelines. If a positive person participates in the gathering, it could lead to an outbreak. We have seen that marriage function were hotspots of COVID-19 during last two waves,” said Dr. Naveed Nazir Shah leading pulmonologist and head department of Chest Medicine at GMC Srinagar.
He said the people should maintain social distance and wear face masks to protect themselves from the spread of COVID-19. “It is better if people serve food to the guests in individual platters. Every guest as well the as host should assure that SOPs are followed in later and spirit,” he said.Dr. Naveed urged people to get inoculated.
“Vaccination is equally important. It will help in controlling the spread of COVID-19 and its severity in Kashmir,” he said.
In Kashmir, the peak marriage season is between August and November. For the last two years, people have curtailed marriage function due to the COVID-19.
The government too limited the number of guests 25 earlier this year when the COVID-19 second wave was at its peak.
Dr. Aijaz Nabi Koul, head of the Infectious Diseases unit SKIMS said the host should ensure proper ventilation and restrict the number of guests.
“There should be open-air food courts with individual serving. Guests should be limited as per the government orders. Use of disposals should be ensured so that they are dumped after use,” he said.
Dr. Koul said anyone having COVID-19 like symptoms should not participate in these functions on moral grounds.