COVID-19 in Maharashtra: Death rate in state goes up by 4 % in 29 days
File Photo: BL Soni

There has been an almost four per cent rise in the number of Covid deaths reported across Maharashtra in the last 29 days. Statistics show that 52,184 people had succumbed to SARS-CoV-2 virus until March 1 and this number increased to 54,283 by March 29 -- 2,099 deaths were reported, of which 1,075 fatalities have occurred in the last 10 days. However, health experts say, unlike the previous year, the case fatality rate (CFR) in the state is low, with more asymptomatic patients who do not need hospitalisation.

But officials say they are concerned about controlling the Covid fatality rate, currently at 1.98 per cent. Accordingly, they have directed all the district health officers to follow strict protocol in curbing Covid deaths and to analyse the medical history of patients from the day of admission. “We are mainly focusing on controlling mortality rate over the rising number of cases. Currently, we have a fatality rate of less than two per cent compared to last year. We are planning to bring this down to less than one per cent, for which necessary measures are being taken at the district-level. Despite more than 100 deaths being reported daily for the last ten days, there is not much difference in the CFR,” said a state health officer.

Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani said they had directed all the health and ward officers to follow the 'Mission Save Lives' which was initiated last June to curb the CFR, which was as high as 5.5 per cent and later, dropped to 3 per cent. Every Covid treatment fatality is being closely monitored as increasingly, a number of senior citizens are succumbing to the virus. “After launching Mission Save Lives last year, the death rate had come down. Again, we will have to adhere to the same nine-point programme to curb Covid fatalities in the city. We have directed all the hospitals, including private ones, to analyse the treatment protocol of Covid patients from the time of their admission to the hospital and the details should be given to the ward war room on the same day,” he said. Currently, in the city, the CFR is 2.88 per cent, still higher than the state CFR, which is 1.98 per cent.

Dr Avinash Supe, chairman of the state-appointed death audit committee, said that numbers would stabilise after April 15. “Speaking to various epidemiologists and going by previous trends, we expect the number to stabilise in eight weeks, which means we can expect a drop only after April 15,” Dr Supe said.

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