Medical Superintendent of Rajawadi Hospital Dr Vidya Thakur distributes roses and chocolates to staff on the occasion of International Women's Day. (Pratik Chorge/HT Photo)
Medical Superintendent of Rajawadi Hospital Dr Vidya Thakur distributes roses and chocolates to staff on the occasion of International Women's Day. (Pratik Chorge/HT Photo)

Mumbai records 89% rise in active Covid-19 cases

Mumbai had recorded 1,360 new Covid-19 cases on March 7 while 1,020 patients were discharged. As on March 6, the number of active cases in the city jumped to 10,398, from only 5,500 in the first week of February. The cumulative case count of the city stands at 333,564.
By Rupsa Chakraborty, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON MAR 09, 2021 01:05 AM IST

Amid the spike in daily Covid-19 cases, the number of active patients who are undergoing treatment has increased by almost 89% compared to last month. Eight civic wards including Andheri (West), Chembur, Govandi are major contributors to active case load in the city.

Mumbai had recorded 1,360 new Covid-19 cases on March 7 while 1,020 patients were discharged. As on March 6, the number of active cases in the city jumped to 10,398, from only 5,500 in the first week of February. The cumulative case count of the city stands at 333,564.

Three weeks ago Mumbai’s daily Covid-19 count was below 500. However, cases started increasing from February 17 when the daily count crossed the 700-mark. Lack in maintaining Covid protocols by citizens, allowing the general public to travel in local trains and opening of various commercial activities were among the reasons behind the current surge in Covid-19 cases, civic officials said.

“This was expected with the relaxation in lockdown. However, the situation is better than September 2020 when the city had witnessed a similar spike in cases. The positivity rate had surged to 20% back then, while at present it still stands at 6.8%,” said Suresh Kakani, additional commissioner, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). “Despite the rise in cases, the overall positivity rate in the city stands at 9.76%, which was around 15% in December 2020,” he added.

As per the data shared by BMC, the average growth rate of Mumbai stands at 0.30%. However, eight civic wards have a higher growth rate. K-West ward, which covers Andheri (West), tops the list with 0.42% growth rate, followed by H-West ward which covers Bandra (West) at 0.41%. This is followed by F-North (Matunga), T (Mulund), M-West (Chembur), M-East (Govandi), L (Kurla), H-East (Santacruz East) and N (Ghatkopar) wards with 0.41%, 0.40%, 0.36%, 0.35%, 0.32%, 0.32% and 0.31% positivity rate, respectively.

BMC officials said highest number of cases are from high-rise buildings. To bring stringent rules, in the second week of February, BMC issued an order asking societies to restrict the number of outsiders allowed to enter the society.

“Your society will restrict entry of outsiders to minimum including maids/milkman etc. Measures like thermal screening to be strictly implemented. Positive cases, if any in the society, to follow strict quarantine guidelines by family for 14 days. Others in the family will get tested compulsorily as high-risk contacts. Any other symptomatic person in society to get checked for Covid-19,” the order reads.

BMC has ruled out any plans to impose lockdown in Mumbai and the city has been brought under strong surveillance with BMC stepping up containment measures. So far, 2,450 floors have been sealed in buildings where Covid-19 positive patients have been diagnosed. The highest number of floors has been sealed in K-West ward with 493 floors sealed.

Kakani said, “In the past six days, we have conducted over 120,000 tests across Mumbai. On March 6, we conducted 23,369 tests, which is the highest number of tests conducted in a day since the outbreak of the virus.”

However, experts believe the situation is still under control as despite the surge in cases, fatality rate is still under 1%.

“On Sunday, the city recorded 1,300 new Covid-19 cases after almost four months. But, only five deaths have been registered, which is around 0.38% death rate. Though active cases have increased, most symptomatic patients are mildly and moderately infected,” said Dr Gautam Bhansali, consultant physician at Bombay Hospital.

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