(Eds: Updates, combines related stories) Bengaluru, May 8 (PTI) Karnataka recorded its biggest ever single-day spike of 48 new COVID-19 cases, including an infant, taking its total to 753 on Friday but the state government ruled out any link between the surge and relaxation in lockdown curbs.
The number of active cases stood at 346 with all but five of them were in isolation at designated hospitals and in stable condition. The five were undergoing treatment in the intensive care unit, a health department bulleting said.
'As of 5 PM on May 8, cumulatively 753 COVID-19 positive cases have been confirmed in the state, it includes 30 deaths and 376 discharges,' it said.
Ten people, who have recovered, were discharged on Friday.
'Not a good day as far as numbers are concerned, today being the day with highest number of positives,' Minister Suresh Kumar, who is government spokesperson for COVID-19 related developments, told reporters.
However, ruling out any connection between spike in cases and relaxation in lockdown, he said fresh cases were coming from place and source where patients have already tested positive.
'...As of today we cannot find connection between lockdown and spike in cases, but it is definitely a caution that if quarantine measures are not followed properly, it will add to the tally,' he said.
The 48 new cases include 14 from Davangere, 12 from Bhatkal in Uttara Kannada, 11 from Belagavi, seven from Bengaluru Urban, three from Chitradurga and one from Ballari.
At least 12 of them are children (below 18 years) including a five-month old girl.
Barring seven, including three with travel history to Ahmedabad, all others are contacts of patients already tested positive.
On the cost per patient for treatment, the Minister said according to a rough calculation shared by the Bangalore Medical College Rs 4.74 crore had been spent as of date which included capital expenditure of Rs 1.40 crore for purchase of equipment and construction of COVID-19 wards.
As the hospital treated 136 patients, it worked out the average cost at Rs 3.49 lakh, he said adding similar reports had been received from other COVID-19 hospitals also.
Bengaluru Urban with 168 cases continued to account for maximum number of coronavirus infections, followed by Mysuru (88) and Belagavi (83).
A total of 98,081 samples, including 4,546 on Friday, had been tested so far. Of them, 92,237 samples have reported negative with 4,481 on Friday.
Noting that it has come to government's notice that in some COVID-19 hospitals senior specialists, specialists and teaching faculties were not attending infected patients, Kumar said instructions had been given for preparing a duty roster and ensure they too took up the work on a rotation basis.
The Health department has issued a circular on making free lab services to the public under the National Free Diagnostic Services at all government health facilities.
Services which are not available in government labs can be taken from identified private labs, with appropriate procedures and payment approved by department in respective districts, it said.
Meanwhile, demanding that the COVID-19 be declared as national disaster, opposition parties in the state on Friday asked the government to bring pressure on the Centre to provide it Rs 50,000 crore special economic package to help those in distress due to lockdown induced by the pandemic.
Accusing the central government of not giving the state's share of PM CARES fund, a delegation led by Leader of the opposition in the assembly Siddaramaiah met Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa and urged him to seek central assistance to take measures aimed at increasing the purchasing power of the people. PTI KSU VS VS