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Sunday, April 11, 2021

Silver lining for India’s Covid-19 scene: Explained in 7 points

Not everything is as bleak as it seems in terms of India’s Covid-19 scene. There are few signs that indicate that despite spike in daily cases, India is still doing quite well on certain parameters. Signs of progress have started to appear.

The discourse on Covid-19 pandemic mostly revolves around lots of negative thoughts and beliefs. The pandemic’s outbreak has caused massive damage not only to public health, but to the country’s economy too.

However, significant improvements in the overall Covid-19 scenario of India are taking places. Let’s focus on the 7 silver linings from the country’s pandemic scene.

1. Rising recovery rate – From the beginning, India’s recovery rate has been gradually improving. Due to natural immunity power of the population and the virus’s less virulent type among other such reasons, India’s recovery rate rose with each day even though new infections rose significantly. On Wednesday evening, India’s recovery rate stood at 56.82%. Now this is the national average. There are few states, for example, Rajasthan and West Bengal where the state recovery rate is way beyond the national average. While Rajasthan top the chart with 78.15%, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Bihar and Odisha record over 70% recovery rate. Bengal, Jharkhand, Punjab, Assam and many other states record over 60%-65% recovery rate. Isn’t it an incredible sign of relief? All we hope for that these figures improve further or stay as it is but never go down.

2. Lowest mortality rate – India’s Covid-19 mortality rate is one of the lowest in the world. Till Wednesday evening, total 14634 people have died so far. If we calculate the percentage with 465553 total cases so far, it comes to 3.14%. According to a report by NDTV, against the global average of 6.04%, India has just one death per lakh population. Italy, Spain, Germany, Brazil, Russia, Sweden and several other countries are much ahead of India in this parameter. According to many, India’s young population has contributed to this. No matter what the exact reason is, we should consider this as a huge plus point.

3. Increased testing – Don’t fret over rising caseload. This is the result of increased testing. India at present is testing around 2 lakh samples per day. Delhi, which has recently come up as a major concern for those handling the crisis with preventive strategies, is witnessing door-to-door testing these days. We all know that testing, contact tracing, quarantine and containment are the four important pillars of success in the fight against Covid-19. The number of testing labs has also increased. The Indian Council of Medical Research said India now has 1000 testing labs. According to a report by Scroll.in, Goa first launched the door-to-door testing method. Eventually, several states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Jharkhand and now Delhi among others followed the suit.

India Covid-19
Health workers wearing PPE arrives at a crematorium for cremation of a woman who died due to the coronavirus infection, in Beawar. Photo: Shutterstock/Sumit Saraswat

4. Decreased positivity rate – Now this is a huge improvement, especially for a Covid-19 hotspot like Delhi. As testing increases, the number of people with Covid-19 positive results are decreasing. While the positivity rate soared the entire months of April and May, it started going down from mid-June. With testing ramped up through rapid antigen kits, now the number of “corona positive” cases are going down. However, experts believe that this trend must follow in other parts of the country as well. But with increased testing, we can head towards ensuring decreased positivity rate. Since more testing leads to more detection and containment.

5. Lowering active cases – One of the most important developments in India’s Covid-19 scene is Mumbai which reported only 824 cases in the past 24 hours, the lowest in 40 days. And remember this happened when the city is not under lockdown anymore but slowly entering into the unlocking phase. Mumbai’s recovery rate has also increased to 50.09%. India has been witnessing slight decrease in the number of active cases since June first week. This means we are having more recoveries than new infections. As per a report, India will hit its peak of 2.6 lakh active cases on July 15. Generally, following a peak, regular decline of cases occur. So, fingers crossed!

6. Increased doubling rate – India could be the fourth worst-hit nations in the world, but its doubling rate has increased significantly since the outbreak began back in February. From 3.4 days then to 17.4 days at present. If this is the nationwide average, the statewise average is increasing too. Mumbai’s doubling rate is now 38 days, while its 12.6 days for Delhi and around 26 days for Gujarat. A group of experts believe that states like Punjab, Kerala and Goa may already have witnessed their peaks and hence the number of new cases are going down. However, another group believe we shouldn’t read too much into these numbers immediately and wait for more days before coming to a conclusion.

7. New drugs and treatment methods – India started with a simple anti-Malaria drug called Hydroxychloroquine to treat Covid-19 patients. Then slowly the kitty of vital drugs and treatment methods to fight the pathogen grew. Now we have Remdesivir, Dexamethasone, Glucocorticoids, Favipiravir, Tocilizumab and the famous plasma therapy among several other leading weapons to fight with. The best thing is none of these medicines or methods proved to be a failure so far, rather have written enormous success stories.

Along with these factors, we believe India’s prompt development to produce huge number of PPEs and ventilators within the country added to the overall improvement of the Covid-19 situation. So, let’s stay hopeful and positive. Half the battle is yet to be won.


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