COVID-19 positivity rate less than 2 per cent, lowest ever since May: Delhi health minister

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Satyender Jain, Delhi Health Minister (Source: ANI)
Satyender Jain, Delhi Health Minister (Source: ANI)

New Delhi [India], December 16 (ANI): Delhi Health Minister Satyendra Jain on Wednesday said the positivity rate of COVID-19 cases is declining and it was below 2 per cent for the first time on Tuesday since the month of May.

"There were 1,617 COVID-19 cases in Delhi yesterday. It is a matter of great satisfaction that the outbreak has been declining. The positivity rate was 1.9 per cent yesterday (probably the lowest ever) and I would still like to request people to wear masks. The mask campaign started by the Delhi government also seems to have a great effect," said Jain.

Regarding the availability of ICU beds, Jain clarified that overall 50 per cent ICU beds are available. However, in some private hospitals, the occupancy is about 80-90 per cent.

Asked whether the test can be increased to 1 lakh, Jain explained, "Now the positivity has reduced significantly. WHO says that the positivity should be less than 8 per cent and it is optimum till 5 per cent. So far the positivity rate is up to 5 per cent, it indicates sufficient testing. Since we have now 2 per cent positivity rate, let us wait till how long it lasts. The positivity rate has been less than 3 per cent for the last 5 days. If the positivity rate is less than 5 per cent for the last 15 days, then it definitely indicates a downtrend."

Talking about the 'third wave' in the national capital, he elaborated, "We cannot say the third wave is over since the cases are coming, be it only 2 per cent. Now corona will remain like other diseases but certainly, the chances of its massive outbreak seem to be less. According to WHO parameters, our 2 per cent positivity rate looks fine."

On the MCD scam charges and mayor's demonstration, Jain alleged that it is the tactics of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to divert the attention of people from farmers' agitation. "Look at the timing, when Arvind Kejriwal went to meet the farmers at the Singhu border, they staged a protest here. BJP's 'dharna' is a political 'dharna', only for doing politics," added Jain.

Reacting on BJP's 'Mahapanchayat' regarding the farm laws, the Delhi Health Minister said, "If they want to do 'Panchayat', it should be done at Singhu and Tikri borders. Fire is at one place and water is being put at another place. It is very strange. Why is there so much arrogance? Withdraw the laws as soon as possible and end the deadlock."

Meanwhile, Jain said the Delhi Government has issued the orders to include the employees of the Jal Board and electricity department along with police, civil defence and sewerage workers in the category of frontline workers so that they can be vaccinated at the first phase. (ANI)