BMC chief asks labs to stay prepared to handle spike, seeks staggered office hours

The state is witnessing a major spike in Covid-19 cases, which several experts believe could be the start of the second wave. For the last few days, Mumbai too has started getting a higher number of cases.

Agencies
Iqbal Singh Chahal
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation on Monday asked testing laboratories in the city to scale up and be prepared to face the situation with 2,000 Covid cases being reported daily. This message was given to the laboratories during an interaction with Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal in the backdrop of rising cases.

The state is witnessing a major spike in Covid-19 cases, which several experts believe could be the start of the second wave. For the last few days, Mumbai too has started getting a higher number of cases. Over the course of the last week, cases have jumped from 370-400 odd to 700 and the number was 900 on Sunday. The positivity rate in the city has also gone up from 4% to 6%. Civic officials said that most of the cases were reported from the highrises.

Civic officials said that Chahal asking the laboratories to be prepared does not mean that Mumbai is bound to get 2,000 cases, but the administration is preparing for it looking at the current trend. Mumbai getting 2,000 cases per day could be worrisome as the city during the peak of the pandemic last year used to get 1,800 odd cases. It received over 2,000 cases in September and October, which the officials claimed was due to higher testing. ET tried to get in touch with Chahal, however, there was no response.


Meanwhile, the civic administration on Monday asked private hospitals to keep 80% beds reserved for Covid cases. Sources said that the BMC has been pressing the state government to stagger the office timings to avoid crowding in local trains. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has already appealed to establishments and offices to have staggered timings.
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