Andhra Police imposed Rs200,000 fine on a wedding party for violating COVID-19 restrictions in Srikakulam after a raid last month. Image Credit: ANI

Hyderabad: Even before the second wave of COVID-19 could ease, Andhra Pradesh has started gearing up to face another deadly wave of the pandemic.

A Special Task Force of experts constituted by the state government to prepare the plans for the upcoming threat has warned that the third wave may affect 1.8 million people in the state, including 450,000 children.

The Paediatric COVID-19 Task Force was constituted in view of the warning that the children would be the focus of the next phase of pandemic.

In its report titled “Paediatric COVID-19 management in possible third wave”, the committee said that about 400000 children would be mild cases and they would possible need home isolation while 360000 children will need hospital admission and 9000 will require ICU beds.

Worst case scenario

The report which will form the basis for the preparations by the state government to face the third wave went into specific details of possible requirements of health care infrastructure. The report said that in the worst case scenario an average 533 children will need hospital admission per day.

The detailed report stressed on the need of keeping the hospital facilities ready for such an eventuality. “We need to be prepared to treat 45000 children over a period of 5-6 months”, the 16 page report said.

According to the report the number of cases will touch peak during second-third month from the beginning of the possible third wave and in this peak period the state would need 2750 dedicated to paediatric patients. For the worst affected cases the state will also need 1,000 Intensive Care Unit beds for paediatric patients.

Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy who discussed the report at a review meeting directed the officials to take all the necessary measures and ensure the preparedness to deal with the threat.

The report pointed out that some children were affected by COVID-19 during the first and second waves but they were mild. “Parents are being advised to keep their children away from grand parents and those at risk of getting severe illness”, the report said.