A health worker collects swab samples to test for Covid-19 at Lesiure Valley in Chandigarh’s Sector 10.(HT Photo)
A health worker collects swab samples to test for Covid-19 at Lesiure Valley in Chandigarh’s Sector 10.(HT Photo)

Numbers of Covid cases, tests drop in Chandigarh

Tests have dropped below the 1,000 mark since September 28, recording a low of 766 on Sunday, of which only 85 cases were positive.
By Amanjeet Singh Salyal, Chandigarh
UPDATED ON OCT 05, 2020 10:37 PM IST

There has been a significant drop in Covid-19 testing and cases in the two-week interval between September 21 to 28 and in the subsequent week up to October 4, official data shows.

Tests have dropped below the 1,000 mark since September 28, recording a low of 766 on Sunday, of which only 85 cases were positive.

Cases in double digits were last logged on August 19.

Data of the last 15 days shows testing almost halving from 11,271 (conducted between September 21 to September 28) to 5,110 tests last week. This collates with a drop in the number of cases from 1,380 to 767 in the same period.

Positivity rate (ratio of persons found positive among those tested), however, increased by three percentage points in these two weeks.

Health authorities said fewer people were coming for tests to private and government labs as compared to last month.

Many went ahead so far as to say that infection spread appeared to been contained because fewer contacts of infected persons were being tested.

“Health education is important and authorities should stress on giving this message that people should come forward for tests even for mild symptoms which in turn can stop infection spread and fatalities,” said Dr Rajesh Kumar, former head, department of community medicine and school of public health, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER).

On ease of getting tested, Dr Kumar suggested that mobile testing teams be set up to start community testing in case people were reluctant to go to centres.

Number of Covid-19 tests and cases recorded in Chandigarh (Biswadip Debnath)
Number of Covid-19 tests and cases recorded in Chandigarh (Biswadip Debnath)

A trend had been noticed lately of youngsters with mild symptoms unwilling to come in for testing, said a community health expert at PGIMER.

“This can be dangerous, otherwise the situation which is seen to be stabilising can spiral out of control again. Infection can spread because the majority of the population is still susceptible to the virus,” said another PGIMER expert wishing to remain anonymous.

UT administrator VP Singh Badnore has directed the health department to focus on economically weaker sections to prevent infection spread in the densely populated colonies. He also directed the doctors’ committees to review the situation daily and recommend remedial measures accordingly. The Administrator directed all concerned to focus on testing, tracking and treatment.

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