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Saturday, June 19, 2021

Coronavirus HIGHLIGHTS: Curfew in UP extended till May 31

Today’s Covid numbers –– Delhi (2260 cases), Mumbai (1299 cases), Kolkata (3280 cases), Chennai (5559 cases), Bengaluru (8214 cases)

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: May 25, 2021 10:30:46 am
Healthcare workers shift a Covid-19 patient in Kolkata on Friday. (PTI)

Uttar Pradesh has extended its partial coronavirus curfew till May 31, a state government statement said on Saturday. Earlier, the UP government had clamped the restrictions till 7 am on May 24. “The Uttar Pradesh government is committed to safeguard the life and livelihood of people of the state. Keeping this in mind, the policy of partial coronavirus curfew was adopted,” the statement said, pointing out that the measure fetched positive results.

The Union Health Ministry on Saturday said the overall Covid case positivity has declined from 24.83 per cent on May 10 to 12.45 per cent on May 22, Health Ministry. It however said though there is an overall decline in case burden, the COVID-19 positivity rate is still over 10 per cent in 382 districts. The ministry, in its address to media, also made it clear that lactating mothers can also get vaccinated. They need not stop breastfeeding after their vaccination.

Tamil Nadu government on Saturday announced a week-long complete lockdown without any relaxations. All shops will function till 9 pm today and from 6 am to 9 pm tomorrow for public to keep stock up necessary items. Public, private busses will allowed to ply today and tomorrow to other districts.

India recorded over 2.57 lakh new covid 19 cases in the last 24 hours ending 8 am Saturday, taking India’s total infections to over 2.62 crore. Out of the total cases, over 29 lakh are currently active, a number down under 30 lakh after three weeks, while over 2.30 crore people have recovered till now. With 4,194 new fatalities, the death toll is now at 2,95,525. Maharashtra’s daily count remains below 30,000. Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala are top contributors.

Live Blog

India records 2.57 lakh covid cases, 4,194 deaths; Vaccination drive halted for 18-44 age group in Delhi; Sonia writes to PM Modi over black fungus ;Active down under 30 lakh after 3 weeks. Follow this space for latest updates.

22:07 (IST)22 May 2021
Kerala govt to conduct medical audit of black fungus infection

The Kerala government on Saturday decided to conduct a medical audit of black fungus after reports emerged about the presence of the fungal disease in the state over the last one week. The decision was taken as some states have started notifying black fungus, found in patients recovering from coronavirus, as an epidemic. "A medical audit will be conducted on black fungus. The availability of medicine will be ensured. Medicines that do not have side effects are recommended to be given to the patients even if they are expensive", Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told a press conference here. --PTI

22:04 (IST)22 May 2021
J&K LG 'strictly' directs DCs to scale up vaccination

Lt Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday took cognizance of low vaccination rate in some parts of the Union Territory and ``strictly directed’’ the Deputy Commissioners to scale it up in their respective districts.

"Rate of vaccination and testing, effective management of Covid Care Centres will be the parameters for monitoring performance of the officers,’’ he maintained while chairing series of meetings with COVID Task Force, Deputy Commissioners and SPs so as to strengthen Covid containment efforts across the UT.

He directed the Deputy Commissioners to maximize testing for areas with high positivity rate, fix vaccination and testing targets for tehsildars and Block Development Officers, share good practices and take comprehensive measures to bring down the Covid positivity rate across the districts, besides tracking the trend on daily basis. The DCs were also asked to prepare a futuristic plan to contain the spread of the deadly virus, besides taking prompt action on Covid related issues and regularly brief the media providing factual and accurate information to the public.

While reviewing the district-wise status of preparations being made to contain the spread of Corona virus in rural areas, the Lt Governor set timelines for establishment of 5-bedded Covid Care Centres at Panchayat level across Jammu and Kashmir. He further directed for prioritizing far flung areas for establishing these Centres, besides ensuring availability of all requisite facilities for patients including proper ventilation, beds, oxygen support, necessary medical kits, linkage with nearest healthcare centres, referral linkage with dedicated Covid health centres & hospitals, availability of tele-medicine facilities, power backup  and other basic facilities. --Arun Sharma reports from Jammu

22:02 (IST)22 May 2021
Curfew in UP extended till May 31

Uttar Pradesh has extended its partial coronavirus curfew till May 31, a state government statement said on Saturday. Earlier, the UP government had clamped the restrictions till 7 am on May 24. “The Uttar Pradesh government is committed to safeguard the life and livelihood of people of the state. Keeping this in mind, the policy of partial coronavirus curfew was adopted,” the statement said, pointing out that the measure fetched positive results.

20:46 (IST)22 May 2021
Delivered nearly 14,500 tonnes of medical oxygen to various states so far: Railways

The Railways has delivered nearly 14,500 tonnes of liquid medical oxygen in over 884 tankers to various states since it started its operation, the national transporter said on Saturday. So far, 224 'Oxygen Express' trains have completed their journey and brought relief to various states, while eight others, loaded with over 563 tonnes of liquid medical oxygen (LMO) in 35 tankers, are currently on their way, it said. 'Oxygen Express' trains have been delivering over 800 tonnes of LMO to various states each day, the statement from the Railways said. Relief by 'Oxygen Express' trains has reached 13 states -- Uttarakhand, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Haryana, Telangana, Punjab, Kerala, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh. --PTI

20:27 (IST)22 May 2021

West Bengal reports 18,863 new Covid-19 cases, 19,202 recoveries and 154 deaths in the last 24 hours. Of the total, Kolkata records 3280 fresh cases.

20:26 (IST)22 May 2021
Karnataka records 31,183 new cases

451 more deaths were linked to Covid-19 in Karnataka on Saturday, 200 from Bengaluru Urban.
Tests done: 1,28,761
Positivity rate: 24.21%
New cases in: 31,183 (8214 in BLR)
Recoveries: 61,766 (36,030 in BLR)
Active cases: 4,83,204 (2,61,115 in BLR)
People vaccinated: 1,04,251

20:24 (IST)22 May 2021
Delhi records 2,260 COVID-19 cases, 182 deaths; positivity rate drops to 3.58 pc

Delhi recorded 2,260 fresh COVID-19 cases and 182 fatalities on Saturday, with the positivity rate in the city slipping to 3.58 per cent, data shared by the health department showed. This is the lowest daily spike in cases recorded since March 31 (1,819) and the first time that the count has gone below the 3,000-mark since April 1, when 2,790 people tested positive for the viral disease. As per the latest health bulletin, these new fatalities pushed the death toll due to COVID-19 in the national capital to 23,013. --PTI

18:33 (IST)22 May 2021
Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine 80 per cent effective against B1.617.2 variant: UK study

Two doses from either the Oxford/AstraZeneca or the Pfizer vaccine are over 80 per cent effective in preventing infection from the B1.617.2 variant of COVID-19, first discovered in India, a new UK government study has reportedly found. The Oxford/AstraZeneca two-dose vaccine is also being produced by the Serum Institute of India as Covishield and being administered among the adult population in India to protect against the deadly virus. The UK findings are said to be based on data from Public Health England (PHE) and have also revealed that the two doses provide 87 per cent protection from the B.117 variant, first discovered in Kent region of England and also considered highly transmissible.  --PTI

18:11 (IST)22 May 2021
Black fungus declared notifiable disease in Uttarakhand

With black fungus cases rising in Uttarakhand, it was declared a notifiable disease in the state under the Epidemic Act, 1897 on Saturday. So far, 64 people have been infected with black fungus in the state and of them, four have died. Black fungus or mucormycosis has been declared a notifiable disease for its co-ordinated treatment as a growing number of people are contracting the infection post COVID-19, Health Secretary Pankaj Kumar Pandey said. The state government also issued an SOP on Saturday for the judicious distribution of Amphotericin B, a drug used in treating black fungus patients. Amphotericin B should be provided to only government medical colleges, institutions and Covid-dedicated hospitals on payment after they formally requisition for its supply on the prescribed format giving details of the patients and nature of infection. Rashmi Pant and Kailash Gunjyal have been appointed as the nodal officers for scrutinising the requisitions for Kumaon and Garhwal regions respectively, the SOP said. The current SOP supersedes an earlier order issued on May 18 for the judicious use of the drug, it said.  --PTI

17:15 (IST)22 May 2021
British Airways flight carrying 18 tonnes of medical aid lands in Delhi

A British Airways cargo flight carrying 18 tonnes of medical aid mainly comprising oxygen concentrators landed at the Delhi airport on Saturday morning, a statement said. The cargo flight from London landed in Delhi at 5.45 am on Saturday. "The total weight of the medical aid was 18 tonnes, made up of five thousand pieces. Among the medical equipment were hundreds of oxygen concentrators from charities, including Oxfam, Khalsa Aid, Christian Aid and LPSUK," the British Airways said. This is the airline's second relief flight to India in the last two weeks, it mentioned. --PTI

16:43 (IST)22 May 2021
Covishield wastage reduced from 8% on March 1 to 1% now: Health Ministry

Though there is overall decline in case burden but COVID-19 positivity rate is still over 10 pc in 382 districts, the health ministry said. "Covishield wastage reduced from 8 pc on March 1 to 1 pc now, while Covaxin wastage decreased from 17 pc to 4 pc in same period," the minitry said.

16:34 (IST)22 May 2021
Eight states have more than 1 lakh active COVID-19 cases: Health Ministry

COVID-19 positivity rate has declined from 24.83 pc on May 10 to 12.45 pc on May 22, Health Ministry. "Eight states have more than 1 lakh active COVID-19 cases while 18 states have over 15 pc positivity rate," it said

16:29 (IST)22 May 2021
Pointers from Health Ministry presser

Pointers from Health Ministry presser

  • Overall new cases are declining since past 15 days
  • Rural areas affected more in this wave
  • Positivity is half as that was on May 10
  • No restriction on breastfeeding after vaccination
  • Six states are reporting high number of deaths
16:25 (IST)22 May 2021
Overall new cases are declining since past 15 days: Health Ministry

Overall new cases are declining since past 15 days, says Health Ministry

16:22 (IST)22 May 2021
15 hospitals in Delhi treating patients with black fungus: Jain

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain asks people to be watchful and not resort to self-medication, particularly steroids, says 15 hospitals in city are treating mucormycosis patients.

16:21 (IST)22 May 2021
Supply of Amphotericin B is being increased

"Amphotericin B was available in the country in limited supply. Its availability & supply is now being increased. Ministry of Pharma is coordinating with Ministry of Health for providing license to 5 additional manufacturers," said Lav Agarwal, Joint Secy, Union Health Ministry

15:02 (IST)22 May 2021
Tamil Nadu govt announces complete lockdown for a week

Tamil Nadu government on Saturday announced a week-long complete lockdown without any relaxations. All shops will function till 9 pm today and from 6 am to 9 pm tomorrow for public to keep stock up necessary items. Public, private busses will allowed to ply today and tomorrow to other districts.

14:13 (IST)22 May 2021
Madhya Pradesh declares black fungus a notified disease

he Madhya Pradesh government has declared black fungus or mucormycosis a notified disease in the state. The state Public Health and Family Welfare Department on Friday issued an order, in which it notified black fungus under the provisions of the Epidemic Diseases Act and the Madhya Pradesh Public Health Act.

A notifiable disease is required by law to be reported to the government authorities. The collection of information allows the authorities to monitor the disease and provides early warning of possible outbreaks. The order came after Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan held a meeting on Friday evening, an official statement said. 

13:34 (IST)22 May 2021
Covid-19 vaccination for 18 plus category halted due to shortage: Kejriwal

Covid-19 vaccination for adults between the ages of 18 to 44 has halted in Delhi from Saturday due to no more doses available in Delhi’s stock,  Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced. Due to this, vaccination centres have been closed and only a few available doses will be administered at some centres today.

13:29 (IST)22 May 2021
Centre says will supply over 2.67 vaccine doses to states in next 3 days

The Union Health Ministry on Saturday said that over 2.67 lakh doses of Covid-19 vaccines will be supplied across the country in the next 3 days. In its health briefing today, the ministry also said that over 1.60 crore doses are still available with states and union territories.

Chennai, COVID-19 Staff nurses outside Government Kilpauk Medical College (GKMC) Hospital, in Chennai. (PTI)

As cases of “black fungus” rise across the country, Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Saturday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take immediate action on the supply of “Liposomal Amphotericin-B”, an essential drug to treat Mucormycosis.  In a letter to the prime minister, Gandhi writes: "I understand that Liposomal Amphotericin-B is absolutely essential for treatment of Mucormycosis. However there are reports of its acute scarcity in the market. I would request you to kindly take immediate action in this matter."

The number of districts reporting a decline in case positivity increased from 210 in April 29-May 5 to 303 districts in May 13-19, the Health Ministry said on Thursday. It also said seven states have more than 25 per cent case positivity, while 22 states have more than 15 per cent case positivity.

The country recorded 3,874 deaths, pushing the overall toll to 2,87,122. On Wednesday, India had recorded its highest single-day death toll with 4,529 fatalities.

Meanwhile, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said India will have procured 267 crore Covid vaccine doses by the end of this year, and will be in a position to inoculate at least all of its adult population, according to an official statement.  The minister said that 51 crore Covid-19 vaccine doses will be made available by July and 216 crore more between August and December. He urged states to ensure that the healthcare and frontline workers are fully vaccinated, as they form the vulnerable categories. There is a need to strengthen testing facilities in peri-urban and rural areas, the statement said.

The Union Health Ministry Wednesday said that those who have got infected with Covid-19 after getting their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine should defer the second dose by 3 months after clinical recovery. The Health Ministry also recommended Covid-19 vaccination for all lactating women.

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