COVID-19: Some states show early signs of plateauing


Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  Even as India continues to grapple with the devastating Covid-19 wave, there is some glimmer of hope as few states are showing early signs of plateauing or a small decline in daily cases. In a large number of states, however, the case trajectory continues to rise alarmingly.

A look at data reveals that the highest number of daily positive cases was reported on April 30 with 4,020,14 cases when India became the first country to reach this grim milestone, while the highest number of deaths was recorded on May 1 with 3,684 fatalities. Both daily cases and deaths, however, have come down marginally over the last three days.

On Monday, the country registered 3,57,229 cases and 3,449 deaths. This fall in the numbers is a result of a drop in cases and also deaths in some surge states and this fact were acknowledged by the Health Ministry on Monday. It said states such as Delhi, MP, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra and Punjab are showing early signs of plateauing or decline in daily new cases with a note of caution that these are very early signals to analyse anything. 

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“Some other states, however, are showing increasing trends in Covid cases and these states should take required precautionary measures,” said Lav Agarwal, joint secretary in the ministry.  The states showing rising daily infections include Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Haryana, Karnataka, Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Manipur and Meghalaya among others.

Epidemiologist Giridhara R Babu stressed the need of seeing the numbers in the context of testing to detect fresh infections. According to him, while states like Maharashtra, Haryana, Rajasthan, Odisha, Punjab and Tamil Nadu seem to be doing better owing to raised tests per million but plateauing or declining cases, in others—the situation is the opposite. 

Health economist Rijo M John, who has been analysing the trend said it may be too early to say if things are getting better for some states. “A few states have decreased testing in the past couple of days and the reduced cases may be due to that reason,” he said. “We need to see decreasing new cases while increasing new tests to be able to say a certain state is seeing a peak.”

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