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Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Coronavirus August 25 Updates: Recoveries outnumber fresh cases in TN, AP’s positivity rate jumps to 11%

The total number of coronavirus infections rose to 31,67,324 and the death toll soared to 58,390 on Tuesday.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: August 26, 2020 12:25:35 am
Coronavirus LIVE updatesThe district also recorded 1,934 fresh cases on the day, taking the total reported count to 46,490.(Express photo By Amit Mehra/Representational)

With the total number of recoveries outpacing the active cases by more than 17 lakh, the Health Ministry on Tuesday said the “recovered patients are 3.41 times the active cases, as on date.” The recovery rate in India has risen to 75.92 per cent after a record 66,550 patients recovered from COVID-19 in a day.

India’s Covid tally rose to 31,67,324 on Tuesday with 60,975 cases fresh cases being reported in the last 24 hours while the death-toll climbed to 58,390, with 848 new fatalities. Of the total, 7,04,348 are active cases, while 24,04,585 people have been treated and discharged so far. The fatality rate has further declined to 1.84 per cent, according to the Union Health Ministry data.

India’s COVID-19 tests per million rose sharply to 26,016 as cumulative tests surged to 3.59 crore, the Health Ministry said on Monday underlining that a key component in India’s COVID-19 response has been early identification of cases by timely and aggressive testing.

Earlier in the day, Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar tested positive for COVID-19 and was admitted to a private hospital in Rajajinagar, Bengaluru. On Sunday, he had postponed his visit to flood-hit districts in North Karnataka due to ill-health.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Civil Aviation (Independent Charge) Hardeep Singh Puri has said that much of the pre-Covid domestic air passenger traffic could be restored by Diwali. The Centre will allow more flights from locations such as Mumbai and Kolkata, which have had restricted operations so far, Puri said.

Globally, infections have crossed the 23 million-mark with over 8 lakh deaths.

Live Blog

Coronavirus (Covid-19) LIVE updates: Over 31 lakh cases, more than 58,000 deaths in India; Over 23 million infections globally; India trial of Oxford University vaccine to start this week. Follow this space for latest updates

22:02 (IST)25 Aug 2020
COVID-19 infection positivity rate jumps 11 per cent in AP Amaravati

The coronavirus infection positivity rate jumped past 11 per cent in Andhra Pradesh as close to 10,000 fresh cases were reported, taking the overall tally to 3,71,639 on Tuesday. The virulent spread of Covid-19 showed no signs of abating, with every district reporting new cases aplenty and adding more clusters in the state. Government data showed that at least 935 new clusters were added in the last week across the state where prevalence of the virus has spread, contributing to about eight per cent of the fresh cases. The data said about 58,000 new cases were in the existing containment clusters, while over 4,300 were reported outside. About 2,100 government staff,including about 525 of the medical and health department, contracted the virus in a week while 11 casualties were also registered.

21:53 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Recoveries outnumber fresh COVID cases, TN tally now 3.91 lakh

Tamil Nadu on Tuesday reported 5,951 fresh coronavirus cases, taking the tally to 3,91,303 while 107 fatalities pushed the death toll to 6,721. Recoveries eclipsed new infections today with 6,998 patients getting discharged from various hospitals and 3,32,454 people have so far got cured and active cases stood at 52,128, a health department bulletin said. Of the 6,721 deaths, Chennai's share was 2,623, while neighbouring districts of Chengelpet (379), Kancheepuram (216) and Tiruvallur (381) together accounted for 976 fatalities.

20:24 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Rawat goes into isolation after his security staff tests positive

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Tuesday went into self-isolation after his security staff tested positive for Covid-19. The Chief Minsiter with family tested negative today.

20:13 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Kerala records highest single-day spike of 2,375 new Covid cases

Over 2,300 new active cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in Kerala today as per the Minister of Health, Smt K K Shailaja. Of the cases detected today, 2,142 people were infected through contact and their source was unknown in 174 cases. 61 are returnees from abroad and 118 from other states.
 
Meanwhile 1,456 patients under treatment for the disease have recovered and were discharged from hospitals today. The number of recoveries in the State has crossed the 40,000 mark with 40,343 persons having been cured of Covid so far while 21,232 patients are still undergoing treatment.
 
10 recent deaths were confirmed today as due to Covid. Abdu Rahman (70) & Kuttyappu (72) from Malappuram district, Avaran (69) from Wayanad district, P P Gireesh (49) from Kozhikode district, Krishnakumar (58) & Krishnan Thampi (80) from Thiruvananthapuram district, Thomas (81) & Rajalakshmi (63) from Kollam district, and Krishnan (54) & Thankamma (78) from Alappuzha district are the deceased. The Covid related death toll in the State is now 244. Further deaths will be confirmed after more tests at NIV, Alappuzha.
 
The district-wise figures of the positive cases are 454 in Malappuram district, 391 from Thiruvananthapuram district, 260 in Kozhikode district, 227 from Thrissur district, 170 in Alappuzha district, 163 from Ernakulam district, 152 in Palakkad district, 150 from Kannur district, 99 in Kasargod district, 93 from Pathanamthitta district, 87 in Kollam district, 86 from Kottayam district, 37 in Wayanad district and six from Idukki district.
 



19:33 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Manipur minister Nemcha Kipgen tests positive for COVID-19

Manipur's social welfare minister Nemcha Kipgen took to Facebook on Tuesday to announce that she has tested positive for COVID-19. She asked all those who came in contact with her recently to get tested as soon as possible. "After getting symptoms of coronavirus, I got myself tested and the report came back positive. I sincerely request all of you who have come in contact with me in the past few days to kindly isolate yourselves and get tested at the earliest," she said on Facebook. Kipgen became the cabinet minister in the state to have contracted the disease. According to a spokesperson of the COVID-19 control centre here, she has been asked to undergo home isolation.

19:25 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Smart cards with auto top-up, thermal scanners, warning stickers: DMRC preps up for new normal

From new smartcards with auto top-up facility to stickers on social distancing norms pasted on seats and platform floors, the Delhi Metro is all set to handle commuters, in adherence to COVID-19 safety guidelines, whenever its services are ordered to be resumed. Delhi Metro services have remained suspended since March 22, the day Janata Curfew was imposed in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. According to sources, it has suffered a loss of nearly Rs 1,300 cr till now. The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) had on Sunday said it shall be prepared to resume operations whenever directed by the government. The statement from the urban transporter came on a day Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said metro train services in Delhi should be resumed on a trial basis as the COVID-19 situation was improving in the city, and hoped the Centre would soon decide on it. 

19:21 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Decline in COVID-19 positivity rate despite increasing tests exponentially: Health Ministry

The Health Ministry on Tuesday said though testing for COVID-19 has been increased exponentially, there has been a steady decline in the positivity rate and highlighted that the number of active cases of the infection reduced by 6,423 for the first time within a span of 24 hours. The testing for the disease has been increased from 363 tests per million per day on August 1 to more than 600 tests per million per day at present, the ministry said. Addressing a press briefing, Union Health Ministry Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said on the basis of 7-day rolling average the positivity rate of COVID-19 which was 11 per cent during the first week of August has come down to 8 per cent now. "While the tests for detection of COVID-19 have increased exponentially, there has been a steady decline in the positivity rate. For the first time, active cases of COVID-19 have reduced by 6,423 in a span of 24 hours," he said. Bhushan also said 2.70 pc of the active cases of coronavirus infection are on oxygen support while 1.92 per cent are in ICU and 0.29 per cent are on ventilators He also said the recovered COVID-19 cases are 3.4 times the number of active cases.

19:13 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Odisha govt fixes charge for RT-PCR COVID-19 test at Rs 1,200

Odisha government on Tuesday  fixed charge for RT-PCR COVID-19 test in four ICMR-approved labs in Bhubaneswar at Rs 1,200. 

15:02 (IST)25 Aug 2020
More than 100 per cent increase in Covid recoveries in last 25 days, says Health Ministry

With the total number of recoveries outpassing the active cases by more than 17 lakh, the Health Ministry on Tuesday said the "recovered patients are 3.41 times the active cases, as on date."

"The steadily falling?COVID-19 case fatality rates stands at 1.84 per cent as on date. There has been more than 100 per cent increase in the recoveries in the last 25 days," the ministry highlighted.

The Health Ministry said 66,550 COVID-19 patients have recovered and been discharged in a span of 24 hours, and asserted that the collaborative and strategic measures led by the Union Government and implemented by the states and UTs are showing results. The record high recoveries have ensured that the active cases of coronavirus infection, the "actual caseload" of the country, comprises only 22.24 per cent?of the total cases.

14:40 (IST)25 Aug 2020
India-US healthcare partnership crucial in battle against coronavirus: Ambassador Sandhu

The India-US cooperation is proving crucial to confront the health challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, including future vaccine development and distribution, New Delhi’s top envoy in the US has said.

India’s Ambassador to the US, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Post on Monday and said: “As societies that respect innovation, India and the United States can do much to provide solutions to the novel coronavirus pandemic and to build a healthier, safer world beyond.”

As both India and the United States combat a pandemic of unprecedented scale, the two countries have drawn upon the strength of their long-standing health-care ties to help them better understand the novel coronavirus and find workable solutions, he wrote.

14:16 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar tests positive for Covid-19

Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar has tested positive for COVID-19 and admitted to a private hospital in Rajajinagar, Bengaluru. On Sunday, he had postponed his visit to flood-hit districts in North Karnataka due to ill-health.

14:07 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Spain imposes new restrictions to curb virus spread

Some Spanish regions Monday moved to impose new measures such as bans on large social gatherings in order to curb the spread of the pandemic, fearing an even sharper surge in coronavirus infections with the opening of the school year in September, the Associated Press reported.

On Monday, when Spain’s Ministry of Health reported figures for the previous three days, the country added over 19,000 cases to its tally of more than 4,00,000 since the beginning of the epidemic. The figure is the highest in Europe.

Dr Fernando Simon, the epidemiology expert in charge of Spain’s coronavirus response, admitted that contagion with no clear source of infection was now widespread in the country.

“There is a certain level of community transmission in Spain, but in some regions is more than in others. The return to school os an opportunity for easier transmission of the virus,” he said at a press conference.

14:03 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Virus tests for students returning to Beijing universities

Beijing universities are preparing to administer virus tests to students returning to the city’s campuses, the Associated Press reported. The cost of testing all 600,000 students will be born by the universities themselves, according to the Beijing Municipal Education Commission.

University classes are scheduled to begin Sept 9. Approximately 75 per cent of Chinese students in lower grades returned to class by last month, many on staggered schedules. The rest are expected to return by this week or on Sept 1.

China’s National Health Commission on Tuesday reported no local infections for the ninth straight day and said 14 new cases have been detected in travelers arriving from abroad.

14:02 (IST)25 Aug 2020
We just have to make this 'China virus' go away and it's happening: Trump

Americans have to "make this China virus go away" and it is happening, President Donald Trump has said, as he thanked the frontline workers for their incredible efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Trump appeared in a taped Oval Office conversation with a group of frontline workers - doctors, nurses, firemen, policemen, postal workers.

This was not the first time when Trump called the novel coronavirus as China's virus. In March, he had said that China is responsible for the spread of the novel coronavirus and called the COVID-19 as the "Chinese Virus". He, later, insisted the term was accurate because the virus originated in the central Chinese city of Wuhan.

13:34 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Manipur social minister Nemcha Kipgen tests positive for COVID-19

Manipur social minister Nemcha Kipgen has tested positive for COVID-19. Her sample was tested at a private hospital in Imphal. The minister is said to be asymptomatic and currently under isolation at her official quarter in Imphal. While her truenat result came positive, she will undergo a second test (RT PCR).

13:19 (IST)25 Aug 2020
5-17 age bracket most exposed to Covid-19: Delhi Sero survey
The survey results showed a prevalence rate of 34.7 per cent was found among the participants aged between 5 and 17.

In the second serological survey, which was conducted in Delhi this month, it has been found that those between the age of 5 and 17 were the most exposed to the novel coronavirusin the national Capital. The survey results showed a prevalence rate of 34.7 per cent among the participants of the above mentioned age group.

Experts say they could be contracting the infection from adults in their family and domestic helps.

“It is difficult to keep children and youngsters home-bound. Even if they are not going to school, they might be going out to play… or they might have contracted it through an indirect route. But it’s just a prediction and needs to be studied,” PTI quoted Dr Mahesh Verma, the head of a Delhi government committee tasked with strengthening the preparedness of hospitals to battle coronavirus, as saying.

“It’s still very complex how people are getting infected. I know a couple of families that are not stepping out but their members have still contracted COVID-19,” he added.

13:05 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Explained: What the EC has said on voting during the Covid-19 pandemic
Voters in Gaya during the 2015 Bihar Assembly elections. (Express Archive)

Last week, the Election Commission released guidelines for the conduct of elections during the pandemic. This effectively rules out postponement of Assembly elections in Bihar, due this year. A look at the restrictions the EC has imposed on campaigning, and why it it decided against delaying polls:

How widely has Covid-19 spread in Bihar?

Bihar is among the top five states in terms of rate of growth of cases, at 4.655 per day in the last one month, second only to Andhra Pradesh among states with a major caseload. In August, Bihar’s caseload has increased from about 54,000 to 1.2 lakh. Compare this to the start of July, when the count was less than 10,000. Until Monday’s update by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Bihar has had 1.22 lakh cases.

So, why has the EC decided against deferring elections?

The Election Commission hasn’t made any official statement on the timing of elections. Unless the EC says something publicly otherwise, it is presumed that polls will be held on schedule. According to sources, the Commission is convinced that elections can be held successfully with proper supervision and precautions as countries like Singapore and South Korea have demonstrated recently. Hence, the EC has released guidelines for elections based on feedback from political parties.

12:57 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Have to wear sanitary pad with diaper for hours: Female doctors on challenges of wearing PPE

“We usually wear a diaper for passing urine,” Dr Jaslovleen Kaur, neurologist, Paras Hospital, Panchkula, told indianexpress.com, who has to wear a PPE for eight hours straight on a regular basis. While this is a challenge for all health workers, female professionals perhaps need to make more compromises, given their physiological make-up. The situation becomes difficult especially when they menstruate. “When you are menstruating, you are wearing a sanitary pad along with a diaper, and you cannot even change it for eight hours. So we take extra precautions. I have never used XL sanitary pads or tampons in my life but now I have to wear them. With a tampon particularly, it is a little more comfortable to wear a diaper.”

11:58 (IST)25 Aug 2020
India coronavirus numbers explained: Drop in number of tests during weekends results in discovery of fewer cases
The number of samples tested everyday.

Thanks to the weekend effect, there was a significant drop in the number of new cases of novel Coronavirus reported on Monday. In fact, it was one of those rare occasions that the new cases were outnumbered by those who were declared to have recovered from the disease.

Weekends usually see a big drop in the number of tests that are being conducted. That results in discovery of fewer number of new infections. Since the reports of RT-PCR tests usually take a day or two to arrive, the drop in new cases is most visible on Mondays. This has been a trend that has been going on for quite some time.

The graph of daily tests in India, therefore, shows a very noticeable periodic sharp dips (see graph). These represent the lower number of testing on the weekends.

11:24 (IST)25 Aug 2020
Indonesia faces struggle to avoid recession, finmin says

Indonesia's economic recovery was "very fragile" and could reverse as shown by tax revenue data in July, the country's finance minister said on Tuesday, warning that the economy faced a struggle to avoid a recession.Revenues had improved temporarily in June after coronavirus-induced restrictions were eased, but the improvement stagnated in July and contributions from some sectors such as trade, mining and construction deteriorated, Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said, describing this as "a map that shows our economic recovery is very fragile and may reverse."Indrawati said for Southeast Asia's largest economy to record flat growth of around 0% in the third quarter would "require an extraordinary struggle".

Coronavirus India LIVE updates: Migrant laborers returning to the city for work undergo the COVID-19 test in New Delhi, Tuesday. (AP)

Coronavirus India LIVE updates

The Centre is planning to ask outbound flyers from India on international flights to have a COVID-19 test done prior to their flight. This comes in the aftermath of Hong Kong government banning Air India flights till August 31 after 11 people tested positive for coronavirus on arrival there from Delhi.

In an apparent reference to the Hong Kong government’s move, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said: “I saw in one place that a number of people were found positive and that country or that city wanting to suspend flights. Look, we ourselves are of that opinion. When I heard this, I told Civil Aviation Secretary that we are insisting for the RT-PCR test certificate from people coming in, I would encourage that even for people going out of India … we will insist that they have a test done prior to embarkation. And we will do that”.

Currently, India has mandated a seven-day institutional quarantine and a seven-day home quarantine for passengers arriving into India on international flights, but has provided an exemption for those producing a negative certificate of an RT-PCR test conducted within 96 hours of their flight’s departure. Similarly, on inbound flights, only the crew that has tested negative for COVID-19 is allowed to operate flights to India.

Meanwhile, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has said that if everything goes well, India would get a Covid-19 vaccine by the end of this year, PTI reported. Three COVID-19 vaccine candidates, including two indigenous ones, are at different phases of development in India. The phase-one human clinical trials of the two indigenous coronavirus vaccine candidates have been completed and the trials are now in phase-two, ICMR Director General Dr Balram Bhargava had said recently.

China has authorised emergency usage of COVID-19 vaccines developed by some select domestic companies, news agency PTI quoted a Chinese health as saying. An emergency use authorisation, which is based on Chinese vaccine management law, allows unapproved vaccine candidates to be used among people who are at high risk of getting infected.

Explained: Lung damage, clotting signs in postmortem of Covid-19 cases

"We've drawn up a series of plan packages, including medical consent forms, side-effects monitoring plans, rescuing plans, compensation plans, to make sure that the emergency use is well regulated and monitored," Zheng Zhongwei, head of China's coronavirus vaccine development task force, told state-run CCTV on Saturday.

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