New Delhi: India registered 1590 COVID-19 infection cases in the past 24 hours, the country has witnessed the highest single-day upswing in the last 142 days.
This brings the total number of active cases in the country to 8,601, representing 0.02 per cent. The daily positivity rate is 1.33 per cent and the weekly positivity rate is pegged at 1.23 per cent.
In addition, 910 recoveries were reported in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of recoveries to 4,41,62,832. The recovery rate currently stands at 98.79 per cent.
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) had earlier issued an advisory to all the states to stick with a five-fold strategy to counter the highly infectious disease. In his letter, Rajesh Bhushan, Union Health Secretary urged states to prioritise testing, tracking, treatment, vaccination, and adherence to COVID-appropriate behaviour, as well as ensuring the availability of key drugs.
Among the states, Gujarat has seen the fastest spike in COVID-19 cases in recent days. The biggest city in the state, Ahmadabad, is seeing at least 600-odd active SARS-CoV-2 cases with over 10 per cent hospitalisations. As indicated by the city’s medical fraternity, this is the highest increment in positive cases in the past six months, and major hospitals are dealing with five to ten positive cases.
Under the nationwide vaccination drive, the country has so far administered 220.65 crore doses of the COVID-19 vaccine including 95.20 crore secondary doses and 22.86 crore precautionary doses. A health bulletin issued by the MoHFW suggests 9,497 doses have been administered in the last 24 hours.
Due to changing weather and climatic conditions, the country has been under the grip of seasonal flu for the past two months. The rise in A subtype H3N2 influenza, which showed similar symptoms to COVID-19, amounted to 50 per cent of the overall respiratory infection cases in this period.
Dr Bharati Prawin Pawar, Union Minister of State, Health and Family Welfare, said in a written reply to the Parliament that most of the cases showed symptoms of cough and fever. While referring to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) survey, the minister asked states and union territories to monitor the proportion of severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) cases among all infection cases and refer to a sufficient number of samples for testing among influenza and SARS-CoV-2 presence.
A total of 92.08 crore COVID-19 tests have been conducted since the onset of the pandemic, including 1,19,560 tests in the last 24 hours.
In its revised guidelines for the clinical management of infections in adults, the National Task Force on COVID-19 previously discouraged the use of antibiotics unless there is a suspicion of bacterial infection. The minister also reaffirmed this and said antibiotics have no role in the treatment of viral respiratory infections. Dr Pawar added that a secondary bacterial infection can occasionally accompany a respiratory infection, and doctors may thus advise antibiotic treatment to address this issue.