At a time when spurt in Covid-19 cases in some states, including Maharashtra have raised fears of a second wave, Telangana has stopped issuing daily media bulletins on the pandemic.
Director of Public Health G. Srinivasa Rao said instead of daily bulletin, the department will issue it once a week.
The move has come as a surprise to people as the bulletin was helping them to keep track of the situation on daily basis. The bulletin was containing vital information like number of new cases and deaths reported, number of tests conducted, recoveries, district-wise daily count of cases and bed status in government and private hospitals.
Only two days ago, health minister Eatala Rajender had said that the health department was on alert following an advisory from the Centre. He also revealed that they were focusing on districts bordering Maharashtra where there is a spike in cases.
Stating that there is no major spike in cases in the state, the director of public health said in case of any significant development, the media will be informed.
He justified the move to stop issuing daily bulletins saying the department can use human resources for Covid-19 vaccination drive instead.
The health department had started issuing daily bulletins since March last year. However, as the information provided then was not comprehensive, Telangana High Court while hearing Public Interest Litigations (PILs) had pulled up health authorities.
Following directions of the high court, the department started issuing comprehensive media bulletins, giving all vital statistics including the list of government and private testing centres, hospitals, bed occupancy and containment zones.
The number of daily Covid cases in Telangana has increased from single digit in March-April to nearly 3,000 in August-September. The numbers have been on decline for last 3-4 months.
The state on an average was logging 150-170 cases during the current month. However, the department had reduced the number of daily tests since the launch of vaccination for healthcare and frontline workers last month.