Covid-19 Positivity Rate Lowest in a Month, But India Can't Afford Laxity, Says Govt

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The Union Health Ministry on Thursday said the positivity rate of Covid-19 cases was at 13.31 per cent, which is lowest in a month. However, it further said India cannot afford laxity even for a day as seven states such as Tamil Nadu, Meghalaya, Tripura, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim, and Mizoram are showing rise in coronavirus cases.

In a press briefing, Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary of Union Health Ministry said, “There is a continued decrease in active cases in the country. Recoveries stand at 86.7 per cent. 21 states have reported more recoveries than daily Covid-19 cases. We have seen a 13-day decline straight. Death data is also going down now. Eight states in the country have more than 1 lakh active cases, nine states have between 50,000-1 lakh active cases and 19 states have less than 50,000 active cases. Tamil Nadu remains a cause of concern.”

He asserted that stringent containment protocols are the key to curb the spread of the infection. “India has witnessed a consistent upward trend in weekly tests since mid February with average daily tests increased by 2.3 times in last 12 weeks. After a consistent increase in case positivity for 10 weeks, a decline in case positivity since last two weeks reported. 13.31 per cent is the lowest recorded in a month. 10 states seeing a decline in cases and positivity. Those states are Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi and Jharkhand. But we still cannot afford even one day of laxity. Seven states are showing rise in Covid-19 cases, which are Tamil Nadu, Meghalaya, Tripura, Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim, and Mizoram. Stringent containment is the key to curb the cases,” he added.

Speaking on surge in number of coronavirus cases in rural parts of the country, he said, “We need to strengthen hospital admission process.” Citing a study, he added that 50 per cent people do not wear a facemask.

Meanwhile, Dr Balram Bhargava, DG, ICMR said early testing, isolation and home-based care is the key to control transmission of Covid-19 infection.

“More of rapid antigen tests should be done because you can get results rapidly and then isolate the patient quickly. Our target is to do 25 lakh tests by the end of this month and 45 lakh tests by the end of June. Early testing, isolation and home-based care is the key to control transmission. In rural areas RAT should be the backbone of testing. 80-90 per cent of the people can be treated at home,” Dr Bharghav said.

He also informed that the trial results of DRDO’s 2 DG drug have been sent to DCGI. “DRDO’s 2 DG drug is a repurposed medicine, not a new medicine. It was earlier used for cancer treatment. Its trial results have been given to DCGI.” he said.

The Health Ministry further informed that home testing kit by Pune's Mylab will be available at Rs 250.

With 2,76,110 new Covid-19 infections being reported in a day, India’s tally of cases climbed to 2,57,72,440 while the daily deaths were recorded below 4,000 after four days, taking the toll to 2,87,122, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Thursday. A total of 3,874 fatalities due to coronavirus were registered in a span of 24 hours. The active cases have further reduced to 31,29,878, comprising 12.14 per cent of the total infections, while the national Covid-19 recovery rate has improved to 86.74 per cent, the data updated at 8 am showed.

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