Delhi’s Covid-19 positivity rate below 1% after 74 days
- The Covid positivity rate stood at 0.99% on Monday, a dip from 1.25% the previous day, even as the number of tests fell during the weekend.
With just 648 new Covid-19 cases, Delhi’s positivity rate on Monday dipped below 1% for the first time in 74 days, as the city stayed on the recovery path after a brutal wave of infections between April and May.
The positivity rate stood at 0.99% on Monday, a dip from 1.25% the previous day, even as the number of tests fell during the weekend.
The city conducted 65,240 tests, the state health bulletin issued on Monday said, down from 75,440 on Sunday.
The test positivity rate is a crucial metric as experts say it shows how widespread the virus is in the community, and when a dropping positivity rate is coupled with decreasing new cases, it indicates that the spread of the virus is reducing within the community.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a positivity rate at or below 5% for at least two weeks before an outbreak can be considered under control. In Delhi, this number has been below the threshold for 11 days now.
Delhi maintained a positivity rate of less than 5% for 124 consecutive days between December-end and early April. In this period, the positivity rate stayed below 1% for 82 straight days, data shared by the Delhi government shows.
At the peak of the fourth wave of cases on April 22, the positivity rate increased to over 36%.
The city also reported 86 deaths due to the infection, recording less than 100 deaths for two consecutive days. As the fourth wave swept through the city, overwhelming health care systems, over 400 people died of Covid-19 on three consecutive days, with 448 dying on May 3 — the most in the city on a single day.
In another positive sign on Monday for the city’s fight against Covid-19, the number of hospitalisations dropped below the 5,000 mark for the first time in 53 days since April beginning. Only 17% of the total beds earmarked for Covid-19 treatment in Delhi and nearly 40% of the ICU beds were occupied as on Monday evening, according to the government’s Delhi Corona app. At the peak, there were days when no ICU beds were available in the city.
Dr Rajesh Chawla, senior pulmonologist at Indraprastha Apollo hospital, said, “We are 15 to 20 consultants in the department, but we are not seeing any new cases. In the last five days, I have seen only one Covid-19 case and the patient was not from Delhi. It looks like the majority of the people have had the infection and it is unlikely to surge for now. The picture will become clear in the first 10 days after the lockdown is lifted.”