A nearly 10 percentage point jump in the recovery rate of Covid-19 patients in Uttar Pradesh in the last 10 days is being attributed to the state governments’s revised norms for the discharge of infected people from hospitals.
On Wednesday, the recovery rate reached close to 70 per cent with 16,629 out of the total 24,056 coronavirus patients getting discharged from hospitals.
Since June 21, when the revised norms came into effect, asymptomatic patients are being discharged after spending 10 days in hospitals, followed by home isolation for a week.
Before June 21, asymptomatic patients were discharged only if their second test, taken on the 12th day from the date of the first test result, returned negative, and had an oxygen level of more than 94 per cent with no symptoms or fever in the last three days. Moreover, patients were asked to isolate themselves at home for a week.
Before that, Covid patients were discharged only after their two consecutive tests returned negative.
It is to be noted, anyone testing positive for Covid-19 in Uttar Pradesh has to stay in institutional isolation facilities or admitted to hospitals, depending on their health condition.
According to state health officials, a day after the norms were revised on June 20, the process to discharge asymptomatic patients started the very next day.
On June 11, ten days before the new norms came into effect, the total number of patients discharged was 7,292 with a recovery rate of 60.32 per cent.
On June 21, the day the revised norms came into effect, 636 patients were discharged on a single day – 262 more than the previous day’s discharge number. That day the cumulative discharge figure stood at 10,995 patients with a recovery rate of 62.01 per cent.
From June 11 to June 21, a total of 3,703 patients were shown as recovered and discharged.
In the last ten days, since the guidelines were revised, a total of 5,634 patients have been listed as recovered, taking the recovery rate to 69.12 per cent.
“The norms (for discharge of Covid patients) in the state have been changed in accordance with the guidelines issued by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). We are counting asymptomatic patients as discharged without a test after ten days in the recovery list. After they are discharged, they are kept in seven-day home quarantine. This is the protocol of the ICMR. No test is required before being sent to home quarantine,” Principal Secretary (Health) Amit Mohan Prasad said.
However in some of the districts, for example in Agra, the patients are being tested before being discharged. “We are still trying to test the persons before discharging them or making them stay in institutional isolation for an additional two to three days,” Agra District Magistrate Prabhu Narain Singh said.
“The problem is that we have more carriers out in the open who are yet to be identified, and that is why the number of positive cases is still increasing,” he added.
Agra, one of the most affected districts in terms of total positive cases, has seen its active cases drop to 115 on Wednesday.
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