Maha reports record 390 Covid-19 deaths in a dayUpdated: Aug 10, 2020 00:59 IST
Maharashtra on Sunday reported 390 Covid-19 deaths, highest in a day, taking its death toll to 17,757, health department data stated. However, from the deaths reported on Sunday, 260 fatalities were from the previous 48 hours, 76 were from the previous week and the remaining 56 deaths were from a week before. Maharashtra also recorded its second-highest single-day spike in Covid-19 cases with 12,248 new infections, taking the state’s tally to 515,332. The highest one-day spike of 12,822 cases was recorded on Saturday.
According to official data, 78,070 samples were tested, of which 12,248 samples were positive, translating to a positivity rate of 15.68%. The overall positivity rate of the state improved marginally and stood at 18.91%. The state also recorded 13,348 discharged patients on Sunday, taking the tally of recovered people to 351,710. The recovery rate of the state stood at 68.25%.
A day after the state crossed the grim landmark of 500,000 cases, state health minister Rajesh Tope declined to comment if the state had reached the community transmission stage. “So far, 60 to 70 per cent of the cases that are reported are from high-risk contracts and from quarantine facilities. It is not the case that people who randomly get tested are positive.
Therefore, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and WHO only should respond to the issue of community transmission after careful study. We have been transparent in the data; they have all the data with them,” he told reporters in Satara.
The rising number of deaths is a concern for the state government and the health department, officials said. The district authorities have been directed to emphasise on the reduction in the Case Fatality Rate (CFR), which stood at 3.45%, against the national rate of 2.04%.
Maharashtra, which has the highest number of fatalities due to the coronavirus disease in the country, stands second to Gujarat in terms of the CFR. However, the gap between the two states is narrowing. As per the data of state Medical Education and Drugs Department (MEDD) released on July 28, the CFR of the state was 3.62%, while Gujarat’s mortality rate is 4.13%, which is a difference of 0.51%. Gujarat’s mortality rate has dropped faster in comparison to Maharashtra. During the period, Maharashtra saw a drop of 0.17%, while Gujarat saw 0.37%.
Dr Pradeep Awate, state surveillance officer, admitted that though the CFR is decreasing gradually, the absolute number of deaths reported is high. “The absolute number of deaths that are reported daily is high, but the focus of the entire administration is on reducing the fatalities. We have modified out standard operating procedures with experience in these months,” Awate said.
The Central government too, in a review meeting held last week, expressed concern over the high number of Covid-19 deaths and has listed 10 districts that need to do more to tackle the cases and fatalities. The 10 districts include Pune, Mumbai, Thane, Palghar, Raigad, Nashik, Ahmednagar, Jalgaon, Sangli and Nagpur. Spread in rural parts of the state where the health infrastructure is weak has made it difficult for the authorities to control the fatality rate.
Tope, who was in Satara to review the Covid-19 situation in Kolhapur and Satara, said, “The number of cases [reported] daily are going up, but the recoveries are over 3.50 lakh with a rate of 68%. Our focus is to keep the deaths lower. Early detection is important. For instance, in Satara and Kolhapur, the deaths are seen between one to five days after hospitalisation. We are working to bring it down.”
Kolhapur and Satara districts have seen a surge in cases last month, while the CFR is also on the higher side at 2.45 and 3.02%. Kolhapur has 5,320 active cases, while Satara has 2,024 active cases. Satara district added 257 new cases, while Kolhapur city and district added 137 and 307 new cases on Sunday.
“These districts have a high positivity rate of around 35%. The public representatives from the district have said that the cases increase with people coming in from hotspot areas into the district and now it has spread. But this is the nature of this virus. There is a need for more tracing and testing. House-to-house surveillance will be started and people with co-morbidities will be set aside,” he told reporters in Satara after the review meeting.
He added that the district administration is also looking to set up a jumbo facility to augment bed capacity. A new testing laboratory will be set up in Satara district to reduce the turnaround time as currently, the samples went to Pune, the minister said.
Meanwhile, Pune city topped the state with the highest number of cases on Sunday with 1433 new infections, taking city’s tally to 70,933. Mumbai reported 1,066 new infections, taking city’s tally to 123,382. Pune recorded 58 fatalities while Mumbai reported 48, taking their tallies to 1802 and 6799, respectively.
Pune district reported 517 new cases, and Pimpri-Chinchwad reported 1,066 cases. Another hotspot in the state, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), excluding Mumbai, reported 2,183 new cases. The region contributed 17.82% of the total caseload reported on Sunday. The MMR, in June and July, contributed around 40% of the state’s daily caseload.
Nashik city reported 807 new cases, while Nagpur city reported 488 new cases. The state’s second capital is nearing 6000 Covid-19 cases. Beed, Osmanabad, and Latur districts reported 235, 161 and 297 new infections, while Aurangabad district added 280 new cases.