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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Covid deaths now across half the dists, but 70% fatality still in top 10

Districts that are not in this top 10 list but have recorded more than 10 deaths each, have contributed roughly 20 per cent of total deaths.

Written by Karishma Mehrotra | New Delhi | Updated: June 26, 2020 7:34:49 am
coronavirus news, covid 19 india, coronavirus live news, corona news, corona latest news, india coronavirus, A medic marks a sample for rapid antigen test at Kadipur Community Centre, in Gurgaon on Thursday. (PTI)

With fatalities from the novel coronavirus infection doubling every 14-16 days in India, more than half the country’s districts (407 out of 720) have now seen at least one Covid-19 death.

However, around 7 out of 10 Covid deaths in the country have been concentrated in only a handful of districts.

So while the number of districts that have been touched by at least one Covid death has risen from 272 a month ago to 348 two weeks ago to the current number, the 10 districts with the most deaths have accounted for about 70 per cent of fatalities throughout this period.

Districts that are not in this top 10 list but have recorded more than 10 deaths each, have contributed roughly 20 per cent of total deaths.

But the number of districts in this category has gone from about 30 a month ago to 50 two weeks ago to 80 now — also an indication of the increasing spread of the disease.

Read | High positivity, fatality rates: Centre sends teams to Gujarat, Maharashtra, Telangana

There is a set of 50 districts that had seen at least one death more than a month ago, but have not had any since then. But there is another set of 145 districts that had no deaths at the beginning of this period, but have at least one now.

While the top 10 list remains largely static, some Maharashtra cities such as Aurangabad, Solapur, and Nashik are beginning to see a faster increase in deaths than larger cities such as Kolkata, Indore, and Jaipur.

These cities in Maharashtra also have an unusually high case fatality rate of between 6 and 9 per cent. Gurgaon, Faridabad, and Ghaziabad too, are have shown an abnormally high death growth over the past month.

Delhi has been counted as one “district” in this analysis. The data is not perfect because bulletins of some states, including Telangana and Assam, do not give consistent district-wise data.

Also data matching exercises have seen death toll surges in Mumbai and Delhi, and scrutiny by state death audit committees may lead to varying definitions of a Covid death.

India’s overall fatality rate has increased from 2.8 per cent two weeks ago to 3.2 per cent now, according to Health Ministry data. But the recovery rate too, has increased from 47 per cent to 57 per cent. Active cases have doubled in the past three weeks.

Deaths in Haryana, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Assam, and Punjab have more than doubled in the last two weeks, according to Health Ministry data.

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