Positivity under 1% for 6 days as infections continue to fall

Published on Jun 06, 2021 04:21 AM IST

Sixty people died of the infection, the health bulletin issued on Saturday said.

Delhi’s total caseload has also dropped to levels the city last saw towards the end of March.(HT photos)
Delhi’s total caseload has also dropped to levels the city last saw towards the end of March.(HT photos)
By, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The national capital on Saturday added 414 Covid-19 cases, the lowest daily spike in over 80 days, as Delhi continued to recover from the fourth wave of infections between April and May, a downturn that has prompted the state government to further relax the lockdown Monday onwards.

Delhi’s total caseload has also dropped to levels the city last saw towards the end of March. As of Saturday, 6,731 people in the city are still batting the infection, around half of the active case count a week ago, when the city had 13,035 active Covid-19 infections.

At the peak of the fourth wave of infections, on April 28, Delhi had 99,752 active cases.

Saturday’s case count, the lowest since March 15, came after the state conducted over 77,694 tests. The test positivity rate, as a result, continued to wind down, and fell to 0.53% on Saturday, the lowest in 88 days.

The seven-day average of daily infections, known as case trajectory, continued to drop, settling at an average of 602 cases per day on Saturday.

The test positivity rate has now been below 1% for six days, and less than 5% for 16 days now.

After the third wave of Covid-19 infections began to peter out in December, the test positivity rate stayed below 1% for 82 days, and began to inch up once the fourth wave started to expand its footprint in mid-March.

As a rule of thumb, tracking a region’s positivity rate serves as a good barometer for whether cases are going to increase or decrease in the coming days.

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that the positivity rate from a region that has a comprehensive testing programme should be at or below 5% for at least two weeks before it can be considered that the outbreak is under control.

Sixty more people died of the infection, the health bulletin issued by the state government on Saturday showed, up from 50 fatalities recorded on Friday.

Dr Jacob John, former head of the department of virology at Christian Medical College (Vellore), said he was unsure if there will be a third wave.

“The Delta variant certainly cannot cause another surge. However, it is very good that the government is preparing for it. What we need to do is increase permanent structures and bed strength rather than the makeshift ones because if there isn’t a third wave, all will be forgotten,” he said.

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