Infections spike, positivity rate stagnates in Punjab
Despite an exponential rise in daily Covid-19 cases in Punjab in last few weeks, there is some respite as the state’s average positivity rate for the last week (April 30-May 5) has been static when compared with the previous week (April 25-30).
The positivity rate in state for both the weeks remained at 11.7%, reveals the weekly analysis done by the health department. Positivity rate is the percentage of new infections in proportion to the total tests done.
According to the analysis, 11 districts — SAS Nagar, Bathinda, Ludhiana, Patiala, Pathankot, Jalandhar, Amritsar, Rupnagar, Sangrur, Gurdaspur, Bathinda, Fatehgarh Sahib, SBS Nagar — witnessed a slight rise in the average weekly positivity rate, and an equal number of districts — Muktsar, Fazilka, Mansa, Faridkot, Moga, Bathinda, Hoshiarpur, Ferozepur, Barnala, Taran Taran and Kapurthala — recorded a decline.
Between April 30 and May 5, 10 districts registered a positivity rate of more than 10%, while in the preceding week (April 25-April 30), the number of districts in the said category was 12.
Fazilka, Ferozepur, Mansa and Barnala districts witnessed the steepest decline in the positivity rate.
No respite in SAS Nagar, Ludhiana
The health department analysis revealed that SAS Nagar (Mohali) registered an increase of 1% in the average positivity rate, whereas the spike was 1.1% in the worst-hit Ludhiana district. The week that ended on May 6, SAS Nagar’s average positivity rate was found to be 24.9% as compared to 23.9% in the previous week. Ludhiana’s figure increased to 13.1% as compared to 12% in the previous week.
Punjab’s nodal officer for Covid-19 Dr Rajesh Bhaskar said the state registered a rise in cases but the average positivity rate for both weeks remained unchanged because the testing was also increased.
“Our daily testing increased from around 55,000 in the last week of April to 68,000 on May 6. This means we are increasing testing to track the virus in order to curtail its spread,” said the nodal officer.
The health department has termed the outcome as the first positive sign that the cases may stabilise in the coming days.