The highest single-day jump in Covid cases was recorded in Delhi on Wednesday, with 792 cases being reported. So far, 15,257 people have contracted the disease. Of these, 7,264 have recovered. The death toll reached 303 as 15 more deaths were updated by the state health department after examining death summaries shared by hospitals.
About 34% of the cases have come up in the capital after relaxations in Lockdown 4.0 were announced. There were 10,054 cases and 160 deaths on May 18, which grew to 15,257 cases and 303 deaths on Wednesday.
The death rate in the city has also marginally increased from 1.59% on May 18 to 1.98% on Wednesday. “The continuous rise in the number of cases is a cause of worry. The focus should be on having a low mortality rate. With the change in lockdown rules, it is extremely crucial for people to follow social distancing and maintain hand hygiene. Considering the mortality rate is hovering around 1.5-1.9%, if a large part of Delhi population is infected, the number of deaths would be quite high,” said Dr D K Tempe, former dean of Maulana Azad Medical College (MAMC).
While announcing the lockdown relaxations, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said the city and its health infrastructure were prepared to deal with a rise in cases. Gearing up for more cases, beds in 117 more private hospitals/nursing homes and 1,500 beds with oxygen support in GTB Hospital are being added for treatment of Covid patients.
The city’s recovery rate is 47.67%, higher than the national average which is around 42%. At present, there are 7,690 active cases in the city, of whom 2,118 are availing treatment in 13 Covid-designated (seven private and six government) hospitals. The rest are either at Covid health centres, care centres or under home isolation. Among those admitted to hospitals, 191 are in the ICU and 32 are on ventilator support.
“However, the recovery rate in Delhi is still better than the national average. If more people are recovering from the disease, then gradually the recovery rate will also reach around 50%. This can only be done if people are aware of the dos and don’ts for the disease. With improving recovery rate, one hopes the net impact of the disease is minimised,” added Dr Tempe.
The Delhi health department has ordered 30,000 PPE kits (to add to the 50,000 in stock), 3.5 lakh N95 masks, 28 ventilators and 435 oxygen concentrators to meet an increased demand in coming days.
In a meeting with the Lt-Governor Tuesday, Health Secretary Padmini Singla said there are 4,462 beds across the capital’s hospitals for Covid patients. She also said there are 429 ICU beds, 343 ventilators and 2,632 oxygen-supported beds available in Covid-designated hospitals.
Meanwhile, in contact tracing that was initiated at AIIMS after a mess worker and a sanitation supervisor died after testing positive, over a dozen healthcare workers have tested positive.
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