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Home / India News / Covid-19: What you need to know today

Covid-19: What you need to know today

This is the 60th edition of a column on Covid-19 I’ve written pretty much everyday since March 19. Perhaps because I write it, I get asked a lot of questions.

india Updated: May 21, 2020 04:53 IST
R Sukumar
R Sukumar
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
A girl carrying her belongings walks with her family members to get token to board a train to their home state of eastern Bihar, during an extended lockdown to slow the spreading of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), in Ahmedabad, India, May 20, 2020.
A girl carrying her belongings walks with her family members to get token to board a train to their home state of eastern Bihar, during an extended lockdown to slow the spreading of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), in Ahmedabad, India, May 20, 2020. (Reuters file photo)

This is the 60th edition of a column on Covid-19 I’ve written pretty much everyday since March 19. Perhaps because I write it, I get asked a lot of questions. I have tried to answer some of the common ones here – with data support, wherever possible, so that everyone knows exactly where India stands.

Have we flattened the curve in terms of number of cases?

No.

India saw 5,314 new infections on Tuesday, which marked the end of eight weeks since the lockdown was imposed. The daily numbers have continued to rise. The daily average in Week 1 of the lockdown was 153; in the seven seeks since it has risen, to 531, 876, 1228, 1611, 2560, 3541, and 4494 (the last in Week 8 ended Tuesday). The chart here maps daily cases since March 25 till May 19, and also weekly averages.

Hindustantimes

Have we flattened the curve in terms of number of deaths?

No.

India saw 5,314 new infections on Tuesday, which marked the end of eight weeks since the lockdown was imposed. The daily numbers have continued to rise. The daily average in Week 1 of the lockdown was 153; in the seven seeks since it has risen, to 531, 876, 1228, 1611, 2560, 3541, and 4494 (the last in Week 8 ended Tuesday). The chart here maps daily cases since March 25 till May 19, and also weekly averages

Hindustantimes

Is there no good news at all?

No; there is good news.

The number of people who recover from the coronavirus disease on a daily basis grew steadily – in terms of both weekly averages over the eight weeks and the cumulative number. The recovery rate (number of those recovered expressed as a proportion of the total number of cases) too rose steadily over the eight weeks. The chart here maps all three metrics.

Hindustantimes

What about the death rate?

That too has inched down in recent weeks (although this needs caveating).

Death rates can be calculated in different ways. This column has taken the so-called Case Fatality Rate (CFR), which is the number of deaths expressed as the number of cases. Some experts suggest that a better way to calculate this would be to take the number of cases two weeks back. Indeed, with 53.25% of the cases seen in India being recorded in the past two weeks, this seems logical. But we have stuck to the traditional way of calculating death rates. The chart here maps the death rate on a daily basis since March 25.

Hindustantimes

What’s driving the growth of the pandemic in India?

Right now, the states of Maharashtra, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, and Gujarat. Indeed this has been the case since March 25. The charts below show the contribution of these four states to the total number of cases in India over these eight weeks; and the growth of infections in these four states and the rest of India over the same time.

Hindustantimes
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