Maharashtra Covid-19 count crosses China’s tally
The city of Wuhan in China is the original epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak late last year. Maharashtra’s first case was reported on March 9 this year.Updated: Jun 08, 2020 02:31 IST
Maharashtra on Sunday recorded 3,007 more coronavirus cases, a day before private offices in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) open after being shut for close to three months, under the third phase of the government’s Mission Begin Again. With its second single-day spike of over 3,000 cases ( the state had reported 3,041 cases on May 24), India’s worst-hit state’s tally now stands at 85,975 cases, taking it past China’s total of 83, 036 cases, according to data by worldometers.info.
The city of Wuhan in China is the original epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak late last year. Maharashtra’s first case was reported on March 9 this year.
The death toll of the state also breached the bleak 3,000 mark after 91 casualties were reported on Sunday.
From Monday, the state government, under a staggered plan to unlock Maharashtra. has allowed private offices to operate with 10% strength or 10 people, whichever is more, with the remaining working from home. It has directed that all employers will have to take up a sensitisation program to educate employees about adequate precautions on returning home so that the vulnerable group, especially the elderly, is not affected.
Meanwhile, the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) is also resuming its bus operations from today after a gap of three months to facilitate office-goers, said officials. Around 2,000 buses are expected to ply on the roads, while maintaining social distancing between commuters inside the buses. The new commuting conditions state that only 30 passengers are allowed to board a BEST bus from Monday, which will include 25 sitting and five standing. One passenger each will be allowed to sit on the left and right sides of the bus.
Of Monday’s reported deaths, 30 of them were in the past two days, while the rest were between May 3 and June 3, clarified the state government.
Mumbai has recorded 61 deaths, highest in a day so far. On Saturday, the city has recorded 58 deaths, which was the highest till yesterday. The city’s toll reached 1,638. The worst-hit Indian city also saw addition of 1,420 infections on Sunday, which took its count to 48,774, of which less than half — 21,190 — are active ones. The state has 43,951 active cases.
State officials are expecting a surge in cases in the wake of the fresh relaxations, but are also hopeful that the curve will flatten in around 10 days.
Dr Sanjay Oak, head of a task-force comprising 11 doctors constituted by the government for the clinical management of critically ill patients, said the flattening of the curve is expected by June 17. “I look at Wuhan where the flattening of the curve was witnessed on the 72nd or 76th day of the lockdown. By that parameter, we are expecting it in the next ten days. We also expect herd immunity to develop among people in the next few days,” Dr Oak said.
“There will be a rise in cases over the next ten days in Mumbai owing to the fresh relaxations and resumption of activities, but there is no need to worry as our health infrastructure is ready to deal with the situation,” he further said. The state has asked authorities to brace for a spike in cases, with relaxations including inter-district travel within MMR and re-categorisation of red zones to only 18 cities.
“Most of the patients who tested positive for the virus in the rural parts and semi-urban areas of the state are those who have travelled from big cities such as Mumbai and Pune. The authorities have been directed to monitor the influx minutely to contain the spread from these travellers,” said a senior official, wishing not to be named.
State health minister Rajesh Tope, however, said that the recovery rate has been improving as 39,314 patients have recovered and been discharged from various hospitals so far.
“The recovery rate now has reached 45.72%. On Sunday, 1924 patients have recovered,” Tope said.
The health minister said 5,51,647 tests have been conducted at various public and private facilities across Maharashtra. Of them, 4,65,672 people tested negative. It means, only 15.58% of the total cases are positive.
Meanwhile, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has made significant changes for Covid-19 testing and has issued fresh guidelines on Sunday. “All direct and high-risk contacts of confirmed cases quarantined at home are to be tested between the fifth and tenth day of coming in contact with a patient. All such patients can directly approach the laboratories for home collection of swabs, for which no prescription will be required,” said the guidelines.
“If any of the direct or high-risk contacts of patients develops symptoms in less than five days of coming in contact then he or she can be home tested immediately by giving self-attestation. Hospitals requiring Covid testing of suspected patients shall be entitled to do so directly through the laboratory and test reports can be shared with the hospital directly. However, laboratory shall have to inform the epidemiology cell as well,” it stated further.
The BMC has also directed all laboratories to ensure that the results of all swabs taken by them are received within 24 hours only. This shall be observed with zero tolerance by the BMC.
State currently has 3,654 active containment zones. A total of 18,515 survey teams, comprising doctors and assisting staff, have screened more than 69.60 lakh people.
So far, 28,504 people have been kept in institutional quarantine in the state and over 5,58,463 people have been put under home quarantine.
The state health department on Saturday, allowed home quarantine for Covid-19 patients with no or very mild symptoms. The norm, which was applicable in Mumbai, has now been allowed across the state. Patients with adequate facilities for home isolation will be allowed to home quarantine for 17 days, starting from the day samples are taken for the test. The home quarantine can be ended if the patient is not developing fever in ten days. Dedicated caretaker for such a patient has been made mandatory, said the notification issued by health secretary Dr Pradeep Vyas.