The number of cases of coronavirus in Mumbai have almost doubled in the last six days, from 993 on April 10 to 2,043 until April 16, according to the public health department of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). In the same period, the death toll too rose, from 64 to 116 deaths on Thursday. Doctors have attributed the rise in cases to the increased testing being carried out in the state.
Currently, Maharashtra has 17 government and 15 private laboratories, the highest in the country. “In the last 15 days, testing has increased substantially, from 3.6 per cent in the first week of April to 5.8 per cent until now,” said a civic official.
For the second consecutive day, the number of deaths recorded in the city were in single digits, with three deaths being reported on Thursday and 103 new cases being found. In two of the three deaths, there were co-morbidities involved, while age-related factors played a role in the third case.
As per the state health department, 286 new cases and seven deaths were reported in the state, taking the total count to 3,202 and 194 deaths so far. Of the 7 deaths reported in the state, four were in Pune and three in Mumbai.
“Out of the 7 deaths today, 5 were men and 2 women. 4 of them aged over 60 years and 3 were from the age group 40 to 60 years. 6 out of these 7 patients (86%) had high-risk comorbidities such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma and heart disease. Death toll in Covid-19 patients has now gone up to 194 in the state,” said official.
According to the state health department, 2,423 positive cases were reported in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), of which 2,073 are from Mumbai and 350 from Navi Mumbai. So far, 132 corona deaths have occurred in this region.
Meanwhile, based on expert advice, the BMC is changing its testing protocol and is only testing symptomatic people, instead of the earlier system of testing even those who were asymptomatic. Earlier, all those who had come in contact with infected persons or had foreign travel histories were being tested.
“The new BMC guidelines allow testing for all those suffering from cough and fever, close contacts of those infected if they develop symptoms, close contacts of those with co-morbidities and senior citizens. The civic body has also mandated testing for pregnant women two weeks before delivery, those on dialysis, patients undergoing chemotherapy and health workers exposed to COVID-19 patients,” said an official.
Covid-related mortality in Maharashtra is higher than other states in the country. To analyse its causation, to plan measures in order to tackle this issue and to provide guidance to treating doctors at the district level, a special task force of doctors has been formed at the state level. Therefore, a hotline is going to be available for doctors treating Covis-19 patients in the state.
Out of 56,673 laboratory samples, 52,762 were negative and 3202 have been tested positive for coronavirus until today. Currently, 71,076 people are in home quarantine and 6108 people are in institutional quarantine. So far 300 patients have been discharged till date after full recovery.