Maharashtra continues to see decline in Covid-19 cases over the past week
On Sunday, Maharashtra recorded 892 new Covid-19 cases and 16 new deaths. The state’s tally has touched 6,617,654 infections and 140,388 deaths. Mumbai recorded 252 new cases and three new fatalities
While Maharashtra has seen a decline in the number of new Covid-19 cases over the past week, the number of daily tests carried out for the coronavirus disease has fallen as well, dropping to an average of 81,842 during the last seven days from 110,502 the previous week.
The Covid-19 positivity rate has risen to 1.14% from 1.11% during the past week, but only marginally.
On Sunday, Maharashtra recorded 892 new Covid-19 cases and 16 new deaths. The state’s overall tally has touched 6,617,654 infections and 140,388 Covid-related deaths.
Mumbai recorded 252 new cases and three new fatalities.
A total of 65,716 tests were done on Sunday across the state, while the number of recoveries clocked 1,063. Active cases in Maharashtra dropped to 14,526, with Mumbai leading with 3,715, followed by Pune (3,047) and Ahmednagar (2,170).
The decline in cases and tests was due to the Diwali season, during which fewer people undertook testing and some sections of the health authorities treated the spell as a holiday season, according to an official from the health department.
Medical experts believe cases are generally declining because a large number of people were already exposed to the Covid-19 virus.
“There is an agent and susceptible hosts that drive an epidemic,” said epidemiologist Dr Jayaprakash Muliyil. “When the number of susceptible hosts comes down, the cases automatically show a decline. The natural form of infection induces robust immunity for a long time. A large percentage of the population has already gained immunity because of the exposure to the virus,” he said.
While fears of a new coronavirus variant persist, Dr Muliyil said the country has already been exposed to different variants.
“We should be fine until a new variant, which uses a completely new receptor site, comes up. I don’t think that will happen soon. The lower test positivity rate, despite a decline in the number of tests, can also be considered as a positive sign. If the positivity rate is low, it still means that the infection is less. Had the spread of infection been higher, the positivity rate would have been higher,” he said.
The number of cases in the first week of November saw a decline, compared to the two previous weeks. The first week of November reported 6,576 Covid-19 cases with an average daily caseload of 939.
The number of daily tests has fallen in the past one week as 572,895 tests were conducted with a daily average of 81,842. The positivity rate during this period was 1.14 %.
Against this, the previous week, from October 25-31, 773,516 tests were done with a daily average of 110,502. A total of 8,633 cases, with a daily average of 1,233 and a test positivity rate of 1.11%, were recorded during this period.
The first week of October witnessed 18,477 Covid-19 cases with a daily average of 2,639 cases. The week reported 966,983 coronavirus tests with a daily average of 138,140 tests. The positivity rate during the period was high at 1.99%.
However, September and October reported a high positivity rate at 1.8% and 1.53%, respectively.
State surveillance officer Dr Pradeep Awate said the positivity rate has been decreasing over time. “We have been controlling the virus and this is aptly seen through the decline of new cases, deaths and positivity rates. Authorities have been focusing on areas with a high number of patients and deaths, and providing timely isolation and medication to them.”
Dr Ishwar Gilada, secretary-general of Organised Medicine Academic Guild said the overall situation improved significantly. “The overall numbers along with positivity rates have declined significantly. In the majority of the districts [in Maharashtra], there are fewer cases, while in urban pockets such as in Mumbai and Pune, we see more numbers pushing the state tally up. The large-scale vaccination has done magic for overall improvement of the situation,” he said.