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Monday, September 21, 2020

Maharashtra Coronavirus Highlights: State crosses 20,000-mark in highest single-day spike of cases

The state on Friday reported 19,218 new cases, taking the tally to 8,63,062 while the death toll rose to 25,964. The spike in cases broke Thursday's record of 18,105 cases.

By: Express Web Desk | Mumbai, Pune | Updated: September 6, 2020 10:00:12 am
Maharashtra coronavirusThe number of novel coronavirus cases in Maharashtra rose by 18,105 on Thursday -- the highest single-day count so far

In an attempt to curb cases, the Maharashtra government will launch a statewide campaign from September 15 to screen 2.25 crore families for possible Covid-19 infection. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday announced that the ‘My Family, My Responsibility’ campaign will be launched by the health department with the help of NGOs and elected representatives to control the spread of Covid-19 and impart health education to the people.

The state on Friday reported 19,218 new cases, taking the tally to 8,63,062 while the death toll rose to 25,964. The spike in cases broke Thursday’s record of 18,105 cases.

In Pune, as many as 80 medical staff, including 40 doctors and 40 nurses, had quit the recently inaugurated jumbo Covid facility at CoEP grounds by Friday, raising issues of their safety. “At least 80 of our medical staff, including 40 doctors and as many nurses, have quit the jumbo facility,” said Sujit Patker, director of Lifeline, which is managing the operations of the hospital.

Live Blog

Maharashtra Coronavirus Live Updates: Over 8.6 lakh cases, more than 25,000 fatalities; statewide screening to begin from September 15. Check latest updates here.

22:55 (IST)05 Sep 2020
State crosses 20,000 mark in highest single-day spike of Covid-19 cases

FOR THE first time, Maharashtra crossed the 20,000-mark in daily Covid-19 cases and became the first state to report such a high single-day spike, as it recorded 20,489 cases on Saturday. With this, the state has now reported 8.83 lakh cases. Mumbai too is witnessing a spike with 1,737 cases recorded on Saturday, taking the total number of reported cases to 1.53 lakh. For nearly a month, the city was reporting close to 1,000 to 1,200 cases daily.

The highest cases amongst all municipal corporations, however, were recorded in Pune city with 2,366 new cases on Saturday, taking the total number of reported cases to 1.1 lakh. Pune’s case fatality is 2.4 per cent, which is half of Mumbai's 5.09 per cent.

As many as 312 deaths were reported in the state, taking the toll to 26,726. Health officials said 190 of these deaths took place in the last 48 hours and the rest before that. Mumbai recorded 33 deaths, while 32 were reported from Pune, 27 from Nagpur, 15 from Kolhapur, and 13 from Satara.

22:02 (IST)05 Sep 2020
State to launch ‘My Family-My Responsibility’ campaign from Sept 15

State Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Saturday said the state government is going to launch a campaign from September 15 --‘Majhe Kutumb-Majhi Jababdari’ (My family-My Responsibility) – which will involve a massive effort to reach out to every home in the state to assess the health condition of its residents, and provide medical help and guidance if needed. The campaign will also seek assistance from elected public representatives, NGOs and local residents.

The minister also directed hospital authorities to ensure that those who do not need medical care should not remain admitted in the hospital. “Ensure that hospital beds are not occupied unnecessarily so that they are available for the needy,” said Tope.

21:35 (IST)05 Sep 2020
No HC stay on final year undergraduate medical exams

The Bombay High Court on Saturday refused to stay examinations in physical mode of final year undergraduate medical students scheduled to begin in Maharashtra on September 8. A division bench of Justices A A Sayed and S P Tavade was hearing a petition filed by nine undergraduate medical students of various streams of the Maharashtra University of Health Science.

The petition challenged the circular issued on August 21 by MUHC pertaining to holding of physical mode of examination for final year students. "In our view, the petitioners have approached the court at the eleventh hour. Hence, we are not inclined to grant any interim relief of staying the examination," the court said in its order. PTI

20:46 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Next three months challenging due to sharper case spikes: CM Thackeray

The spike in COVID-19 cases in Mumbai in the last two days shows the state administration will face the challenge of containing the outbreak more vigorously in the next two to three months, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said on Saturday. He was speaking at a review meeting on the COVID-19 situation.

"When the number of cases daily was between 1000-1100, we felt we are the peak of the virus spread. But in the last two days, the daily spike is between 1700-1900. Hence, the next three months are challenging and we have to tackle it effectively," he said.

Thackeray said 5000-6000 more beds can be arranged in Mumbai and the administration has to plan for oxygen and ICU facilities. (PTI)

19:14 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Maharashtra accounted for 35 per cent of all deaths registered in 24 hours: Centre

The Centre on Saturday exhorted Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, accounting for about 46 per cent of active COVID-19 cases and 52 per cent of deaths in the last 24 hours, to focus on aggressive measures to break the chain of transmission and keep mortality rate below 1 per cent. "These three states also account for 52 per cent of all COVID-19 deaths reported across the country in a day. Maharashtra alone accounted for 35 per cent of all deaths registered in 24 hours," the ministry highlighted. The need for effective containment and contact tracing was underlined for Pune, Nagpur, Kolhapur, Sangli, Nashik, Ahmednagar, Raigad, Jalgaon, Solapur, Satara and Palghar districts of Maharashtra.

18:52 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Railways to allow operation of 80 more trains from Sept 12

Witnessing a surge in demand, Railways has decided to run 80 more trains on various routes across India from September 12, including a Vande Bharat Express, a Shatabdi and a weekly Shramik train. The transporter will also run “clones” of those trains which see heavy demand, to clear waiting lists in the future. Read more

14:51 (IST)05 Sep 2020
District administration to increase beds in Latur

Considering the coronavirus spread in rural areas, the local administration in Maharashtra's Latur district plans to increase the number of oxygen-fitted beds at treatment facilities. Private hospitals in rural areas may also be roped in to cater to Covid-19 patients, district collector G Shreekant told PTI on Friday night. "Due to limited manpower and infrastructure, private hospitals are also being considered for Covid-19 treatment in Latur. We will arrange for oxygen supply at these facilities," the collector said.

14:00 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Pune: Fire breaks out at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel hospital OT, short circuit suspected

A fire broke out at the Operation Theatre (OT) of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Cantonment General Hospital due to a suspected short-circuit, in Pune on Saturday morning. No one was injured in the incident. The Covid ICU ward in the hospital also remain unaffected, officials said. Three fire tenders of the Pune Cantonment Board (PCB) brigade rushed to the spot after the blaze erupted at around 11 am.

13:19 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Pune: 80 doctors, nurses quit CoEP jumbo facility

As many as 80 medical staff, including 40 doctors and 40 nurses, have quit the recently inaugurated jumbo Covid facility at CoEP grounds by Friday, raising issues of their safety. “At least 80 of our medical staff, including 40 doctors and as many nurses, have quit the jumbo facility,” said Sujit Patker, director of Lifeline, which is managing the operations of the hospital. The doctors and nurses had claimed that they feared for their life from people who were “gatecrashing the jumbo facility, abusing and threatening”. “Some workers of political parties had gatecrashed and abused the medical staff, who then raised concerns regarding their safety. Doctors are being pressurised, RTIs are being filed… Instead of allowing them to focus on treatment of Covid-19 patients, their attention is being diverted towards non-issues,” Patker said.

12:30 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Mumbai: Night curfew lifted a month ago but prohibitory orders still in force in city

The Mumbai police lifted a four-and-a-half-month-long night curfew in the city in August. However, prohibitory orders under Section 144 are still in effect and people need valid reasons to leave their homes. Prohibitory orders were first issued in Mumbai in March after the Maharashtra government announced the lockdown. The prohibitory orders, which have to be issued afresh every 15 days, had restricted the movement of people between 9 pm and 5 am, except in cases of emergencies.

11:43 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Mumbai: Antigen tests on hawkers, shopkeepers

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has started to conduct antigen tests on hawkers and shopkeepers for the novel coronavirus disease in the areas that have witnessed more than one per cent virus growth rate. The civic body’s move comes on the heels of the gradual relaxations in lockdown restrictions over the last month under which all shops have been allowed to reopen. On August 5, the BMC had allowed all shops to operate, revoking its previous odd-and-even rule. With most markets resuming business, BMC officials said, the Covid-19 tests were crucial to ensure that transmission of the virus through hawkers and shopkeepers to their customers could be contained.

11:17 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Post Ganeshotsav & dip in nursing homes catering to the infected, private hospitals witness rise in Covid admissions

Private hospitals have been reporting a spike in new admissions of Covid-19 patients with the wait list for intensive care units in several hospitals growing over the past week. The increased strain is being attributed to the probability of people contracting the infection during Ganeshotsav, which saw increased socialising. Also, BMC’s decision to reconvert 72 nursing homes into non-Covid centres is forcing people to turn towards private hospitals. Data available in the public domain shows that of the 15,911 isolation beds in the city, 7,663 are available — suggesting that adequate number of beds are at hand to cater to patients. However, the availability of beds in private hospitals is substantially lower than that in public hospitals. Only 59 ICUs remain vacant in the private sector as opposed to 113 in the public sector till September 3. In private hospitals, while 82 per cent of allotted the beds are occupied by Covid-19 patients, public hospitals had lower occupancy at 70 per cent.

10:56 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Limit chest CT scan use in Covid diagnosis: Doctors

Doctors have urged people not to unnecessarily undergo expensive chest CT scans and use them as a screening tool to detect Covid-19. “A CT chest scan has been increasingly used as one of the first investigations of diagnosis for Covid-19. Unfortunately, there are limitations as CT findings — though sensitive — are not specific for Covid-19,” said Dr Jitendra Oswal, deputy medical director of Bharati Hospital. Antigen and RT-PCR tests are freely available and are the gold standard for diagnosis of Covid-19, he said. “For some time now, people have been undergoing CT scans on the recommendation of their general practitioners. The scan should be limited to diagnosing Covid-19 only in certain patients,” Oswal added.

10:26 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Lockdown impact: Mumbai airport saw sharpest decline in pollution

A study by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) to see the impact of the lockdown on the environment across the state has shown that Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport recorded the sharpest decline in pollution levels, followed by Sion in the city and Vasai West in Palghar. The study titled ‘Impact Evaluation of Covid-19 Pandemic on Environmental Attributes’ was commissioned by MPCB and the report was released on July 31. It was conducted twice – pre-lockdown, between March 1 and March 20 and during lockdown, between March 21 and June 1. The average AQI (air quality index) recorded at the international airport during the pre-lockdown period was 153.05, which falls in the “moderate” category. The average AQI recorded at the station during lockdown was 54.41, falling in the “satisfactory” category. The AQI at almost all locations in Mumbai improved from moderate to satisfactory during lockdown, stated the report.

10:08 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Maharashtra: Statewide screening campaign for Covid begins from Sept 15

The government will launch a statewide campaign from September 15 to screen 2.25 crore families for possible Covid-19 infection. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday announced that the ‘My Family, My Responsibility’ campaign will be launched by the health department with the help of NGOs and elected representatives to control the spread of Covid-19 and impart health education to the people. The campaign, to be conducted in two phases, is aimed at controlling the spread of Covid-19 while more lockdown restrictions are eased. While the first phase of the campaign will be completed by October 10, the second phase will be undertaken between October 12 and October 24.

09:34 (IST)05 Sep 2020
Pawar gets involved in tackling pandemic situation in home district

As Pune has become the hotspot of Covid-19 pandemic, NCP chief Sharad Pawar took the district administration to task over failure in containing the spread of infection and resolve the woes of residents despite setting up a jumbo facility. Pune district has been the most affected in the country with the total number of infected persons crossing 1.8 lakh mark, including one lakh in Pune Municipal Corporation area alone, which is also the highest in the country. The district also has the highest number of active cases. Pawar, who reviewed the pandemic situation in Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) on Thursday, held discussions with the Pune administration and city leaders of NCP on Friday.

21:09 (IST)04 Sep 2020
Maha House Speaker tests positive 2 days before session starts

Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Nana Patole on Friday said he has tested COVID-19 positive, two days before the monsoon session of state legislature begins here. Patole said he developed symptoms while touring his constituency in Vidarbha region to monitor flood relief work. "I got myself tested and the results were positive," he tweeted. He asked those who came in his contact recently to get themselves tested. NCP MLA Narhari Zhirwal, who is the Assembly Deputy Speaker, will chair the proceedings in Patole's absence, a Vidhan Bhawan official said. For the two-day session, officials have put in place a slew of measures to ensure members do not contract the infection and House proceedings go on without any hindrance.

20:38 (IST)04 Sep 2020
HRAWI urges Maharashtra govt to allow re-opening of restaurants

Welcoming the Maharashtra government's move to fully reopen hotels, the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India's (HRAWI) on Friday urged the government to allow restaurants to re-open with dine-in services as well. The association had written to the state government seeking relaxations for the hospitality industry, including the re-opening of restaurants and also allowing hotels to operate at 100 per cent capacities, HRAWI said in a statement. "While the government has given a nod to the later, the former request did not find any mention in the order on August 31," the statement added. HRAWI said the industry has appreciated the government's decision to allow hotels to operate with full capacity but is pressing on it to consider allowing restaurants to re-open with dine-in services as well. "We are glad that the Maharashtra government has allowed 100 per cent capacity utilisation for hotels in the state. Restaurants inside hotels are allowed to open for only in-house guests," HRAWI President Gurbaxish Singh Kohli said.

20:16 (IST)04 Sep 2020
Mumbai: four resident doctors suspected to be `reinfected' by virus

Four resident doctors at hospitals in Mumbai are suspected to have contracted coronavirus for a second time, an official of the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) said on Friday. However, a senior doctor from one of the two hospitals said it was not clear whether it was a 're-infection' or mere continuation of the earlier coronavirus infection. 'Four resident doctors working at Sion and Nair hospitals have tested positive for coronavirus again. All four had tested positive for the infection a month ago as well,' the senior MARD functionary said. The Lokmanya Tilak Municipal General Hospital in Sion and BYL Nair Charitable Hospital in Mumbai Central area are two major facilities where COVID-19 patients are being treated. (PTI)

14:37 (IST)04 Sep 2020
Maharashtra Assembly session to kick off on September 7 with restrictions

Maharashtra's Legislative Assembly session will begin on September 7 amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Several precations have been taken by officials, including social distancing measures, Covid-19 kits for MLAs and new seating arrangements. A day before the session, members will take Covid-19 tests to ensure they do not have the disease. The session, the Sena-led MVA's first since assuming office, will be the shortest-even monsoon session due to the pandemic. It has already been postponed twice due to Covid-19.

coronavirus news, mumbai, coronavirus, mumbai news, maharashtra coronavirus news, lockdown news, unlock 4 lockdown, maharashtra coronavirus cases, mumbai news, corona news, maharashtra unlock 4 guidelines A health worker takes samples for Covid-19 testing in Mumbai. (Express Photo: Amit Chakravarty)

Maharashtra, Mumbai, Pune, Thane Coronavirus Live News Updates:

Maharashtra on Thursday reported 18,105 new COVID-19 cases, the highest single-day count so far, taking its tally to 8,43,844, while the death toll crossed the was recorded as 25,586.

In some good news for Mumbai, there is a progressive decline in the monthly growth rate of new Covid-19 cases in the city, which for August stands at 27.5 per cent. For the preceding months of July and June, the growth rate for Mumbai was 47 per cent and 95.6 per cent respectively. On Wednesday, however, Mumbai saw an unusual spike with 1,622 fresh Covid cases recorded by BMC. From August 28 till September 1, less than 1,500 cases had been recorded daily. Meanwhile, Pune, which has the most number of active cases in the country, reported 1,706 fresh cases along with 28 deaths, pushing up the infection count to 1,04,555 and the toll to 2,607.

In its Unlock 4.0 guidelines, the Maharashtra government has announced significantly eased restrictions, including allowing inter-district movement of persons and goods, raising attendance in its offices and allowing hotels and lodges to operate at 100 per cent capacity. Schools and colleges, however, will remain closed. Cinema halls and swimming pools will also continue to remain shut till September 30.

All non-essential shops will be allowed to continue as per relaxations and guidelines issued from time to time. Liquor shops will continue to operate.

All private offices may operate up to 30% strength as per requirement. However, all the employers will take sensitization programs to educate the employees to take adequate precautions on returning home so that vulnerable group especially the elderly is not affected. A Vigilance Officer will be appointed in every office for ensuring the norms like social distancing, face coverings, etc. to avoid the spread of Covid-19. Staggering of office timings should be encouraged and only work related movement will be allowed.

International air travel of passengers will not be allowed, except as permitted by MHA. The metro will also remain closed.

Social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious functions and other large congregations will be barred.