- As on July 9, active cases in Delhi stand at 21,567, lowest since June 12
- Rapid antigen technology has increased testing capability: Centre
- In spite of increase in tests, active cases are under control: Centre
New Delhi: The COVID-19 situation in the national capital has shown improvement in recent days in both recovery and doubling rates, the Union Home Ministry said on Thursday (July 9), while 2,187 fresh cases were reported and the city’s coronavirus tally rose to 1,07,051. According to the Delhi government’s health bulletin issued on Thursday, 45 fresh fatalities were reported taking the death tally due to coronavirus to 3,258. The active cases stood at 21,567, the lowest in the last 28 days (since June 12). Further, 4,027 people recovered, according to the bulletin, the highest in the last 19 days (since June 21). It said 82,226 people have recovered so far, pushing the recovery rate to 76 per cent. The national recovery rate stands at 62 per cent.
Addressing a press conference, Home Ministry Joint Secretary Punya Salila Srivastava said there were 23,552 active cases in Delhi. She, however, said the recovery rate in the national capital was about 72 per cent and the doubling rate has increased to 29.7 days or about 30 days. She was referring to the figures released by the Delhi health department on Wednesday (July 8).
Ms Srivastava said the ministry has been holding regular meetings with the state governments in the Delhi-NCR region for improving the pandemic situation. In these meetings, national-level experts also participate and some important decisions have been take, she said. These include controlling the cost of COVID treatment in private hospitals, arrangement of additional beds in the national capital, increasing the number of tests using rapid antigen technology, careful demarcation of containment zones, contact tracing of all affected persons, effective use of Information Technology systems and AIIMS Delhi consultancy telemedicine facility now available to all COVID hospitals in the country for clinical management of the disease.
Joint efforts have improved the situation in Delhi. Rapid antigen technology is being used on a large scale which has increased testing capability, she said.
With the Rapid Antigen tests, testing has been significantly ramped up in the national capital.
Till July 8, over 6.79 lakh tests have been done which translates into 35,780 tests per million population. Now every day over 20,000 tests are being done but in spite of increase in tests, active cases are under control, Ms Srivastava said.
The official said the number of hospital beds available for COVID care in Delhi has been increased.
On June 1, there were 4,456 hospital beds available. Now 15,096 beds are available. On July 8, there were 10,237 vacant beds which is about 68 percent of the availability, she said.
Ms Srivastava said the Sardar Patel COVID care centre at Chattarpur here has emerged as a game changer as provision of a good facility for Delhi residents was ensured within 12 days, setting an example for the entire country. In a related development, the Delhi government-run Guru Tegh Bahadur hospital is aiming to increase the number of ICU beds to 500 over the next two weeks, an official said. There are 1,500 beds in the hospital and around 75 of them are Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds.
Over the next two weeks, we are going to increase the number of ICU beds to 500, Vinay Bhushan, Nodal Officer of GTB Hospital said.
The hospital administration has also arranged 45 tablets with which patients can talk to their family members over video call. A tender has also been floated to install television units in each ward. Earlier this week, CM Kejriwal had said the Delhi government has ramped up the installation of ICU beds in Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty (RGSS) hospital from 45 to 200, and in LNJP hospital from 60 to 180, which are both COVID dedicated hospitals in Delhi.
Ms Srivastava said Unlock 2.0 directions have been implemented from July 1 and stage-wise permission was being given for activities being allowed outside containment zones. However, the lockdown will be strictly followed in containment zones till July 31.
Now all economic activities are permitted. Complying with national directives has become paramount like masks, social distancing, etc, she said, adding that the ministry is keeping a close watch on the implementation of the national directives.
Meanwhile, the authorities in several districts were busy chalking out a strategy to screen daily wagers, domestic workers, auto drivers and food suppliers for COVID-19. The east Delhi administration decided to use its 26 dispensaries for the exercise.
An official said in central Delhi district, sub-divisional magistrates have been asked to prepare a database of such people in their respective areas with the help of municipal corporations and traders associations. Strategies are expected to be chalked out by Friday in districts like north, northwest and south.
On Wednesday, the Delhi government revised its ‘COVID Response Plan’ and would enlist and screen for the novel coronavirus daily wagers, domestic workers, auto drivers and food suppliers.
In another related development, a 53-year-old assistant sub-inspector of Delhi Police died due to coronavirus at a hospital here. Jeevan Singh, posted at Delhi Police’s Special branch, was attached with the Motor Transport section of the department, they said. Around 2,000 Delhi Police personnel have tested positive for the virus, out of which 1,300 have resumed their duties after recovery. At least 12 policemen have died in Delhi due to COVID-19 so far, according to police.
NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene.