Over the last two weeks, a gradual decline in daily new cases of Covid-19 and the positivity rate has been witnessed in Maharashtra. Last week, the state had recorded 1.3 lakh new Covid-19 cases – a 12.7 per cent drop from the week before.
State Health Secretary Dr Pradeep Vyas said while this is a positive sign, the trend has to hold for a few days more for definite conclusions to be drawn. Maharashtra contributes 22 per cent of India’s Covid-19 load. A rise or fall in cases directly impacts India’s Covid-19 figures.
Since September 18, when there were 3,00,887 active cases, there has been an increasing decline in the figure. As on September 27, Maharashtra has 2,73,228 active cases.
An analysis by the state government shows a slight decline in the number of active Covid-19 cases over the past fortnight. Pune, Mumbai, Satara, Sangli, Ratnagiri and Raigad are among the 17 districts that have shown a drop in the number of active cases from September 12, said state Epidemiologist Dr Pradip Awate.
Dr Shashank Joshi, member of the Maharashtra task force on Covid-19, told The Indian Express: “The state has increased the number of tests being conducted and for the first time, there are signs that we may just bend the curve.”
Washim, Yavatmal, Bhandara, Parbhani, Beed, Dhule, Nandurbar, Ahmednagar and Jalgaon are among other districts where the number of active cases have declined. Also, week-wise data compiled by the state public health department shows that the positivity rate has declined over the last two weeks even as the number of tests being conducted has risen from 60,000 to 80,000 a fortnight ago to around 90,000 to a lakh now. The state recorded a positivity rate – total positive cases against the total number of tests conducted – of 24.2 per cent from September 14 to September 20, which decreased to 18.84 per cent from September 21 to 27. The positivity rate came down from 25.3 per cent on Septe-mber 14 to 23.9 on September 20 and to 21.2 on September 26.
Awate said the decline suggests that a large population in the state may have been exposed to Covid-19. “We are noticing both, a definite trend of reduction in cases and in positivity rate, but we need to observe this for four weeks to draw solid conclusions,” he said.
“While reduction is a good sign, we have miles to go. We still have a few districts where positivity rate is high. People need to continue wearing masks,” Vyas said.
Ratnagiri, Raigad and Palghar have a high positivity rate. In Ratnagiri, Civil Surgeon Dr Ashok Bolde said 50 per cent of people have tested positive. “It could be due to targeted testing or only symptomatic people are getting tested,” he said.
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