India Coronavirus surge supplemented by high recovery rate, but no time to let guard down
India crossed the 8 million mark in terms of coronavirus infection cases across the country, becoming second to United States, which is leading the global toll with 8.7 million confirmed cases. Amid the staggering surge in India’s Covid-19 cases, the health ministry held media briefing confirming that the ‘slide in active cases is supplemented by an exponential rise in the recoveries.’
On Tuesday, speaking about the country’s coronavirus ongoing trends, Union Health Ministry’s Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said, that the number of new confirmed virus cases in India in the last 24 hours went below 36,500 (36,470) for the first time in last three months. The country reported 34,884 confirmed cases on July 18, 2020.
Bhushan said, “With a high number of COVID patients recovering every day, and the sustained fall in the mortality rate, India’s steady trend of registering dipping active cases continues. The active cases have declined to 6.25 lakh, and the total positive cases of the country are 6,25,857 and now comprise 7.88% of the total cases.”
Bhushan emphasising about the recoveries said. “total recovered cases have crossed 72 lakh (72,01,070)” and “national recovery rate has further grown to 90.62%”.
The ministry mentioned that 78% of the new recovered cases were mainly reported from 10 States/UTs, with Maharashtra leading with more than 9,000 single day recoveries, followed by Karnataka with over 8,000 recoveries.
Though the rate of recovery doesn’t take the health ministry’s mind away from the Covid-19 calamity. The recent data on coronavirus infections showed that 76% of the new confirmed cases were concentrated in 10 States and UTs, and Kerala and West Bengal were lead contributors to the count, with more than 4,000 cases each. Maharashtra and Karnataka were send to follow, with over 3,000 new cases. As per the latest reports, India’s Case Fatality Rate (CFR) was 1.5%.
Health secretary said, “What is a matter of concern now is the fact that States like Kerala, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Delhi are not showing an improvement to the level we were expecting. 58% of new deaths are reported in five States and Union Territories [Maharashtra, West Bengal, Delhi, Chhattisgarh and Karnataka] in the last 24 hours.”
NITI Aayog member VK Paul, referred to the coronavirus as a “mischievous virus” and said was “still threatening an overwhelming [part of the] population”. Paul said, “Though India’s numbers are improving, we are still vulnerable. We are seeing a second wave in several regions and the US is seeing its third peak… Winters could be playing a role as is the fact that we may be becoming lax about the prevention measures. Slowing down containment strategy is also playing an important role [in the pandemic].”
“The fact that even countries of much greater economic capability, per capita income and good health systems can succumb to a huge second peak is a lesson for all of us,” Paul added.
Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director General Balram Bhargava linked the hike in Covid mortality rate to pollution and said, “Pollution is a major contributor to COVID-19 mortality”.
Bhargava added that as per recent analysis of the data, children could be the super-spreaders of the virus, who otherwise were considered immune to it. He said, “This has been seen in Mizoram, where the number of active COVID cases is small. Children (under 17-years) form only a very small portion (8%) of the total active cases across India.”