Maharashtra, on Friday, breached the 15 lakh-mark with 12,135 new COVID-19 cases, taking its total count to 15,06,018 cases so far. The death toll has inched closer to 40,000 cases after 302 fatalities were reported in the last 24 hours, taking the death count to 39,732. Meanwhile, the state’s recovery rate has now increased to 81.68 per cent. 17,323 patients have recovered across the state, taking the tally to 12,29,339 so far.
Mumbai continues to report the highest number of cases across the state. It recorded 2,289 cases, pushing its tally to 2,25,050. The city also recorded 48 deaths, taking the mortality count to 9,340. The scenario in Mumbai has changed in comparison to the last month, when the daily cases in the city kept going up.
The state has continued to record comparatively fewer fresh cases. In the past eight days. Between October 1 and October 8, 110,592 cases were recorded. The number was 150,920 in the corresponding period last month (September), indicating that the situation is getting a little better than the previous month, following a fall in the infection rate.
However, officials said the state is still testing less than its full capacity.
“The situation is improving, but we are also not testing enough. Our average per day testing is somewhere around 80,000 to 90,000 tests a day, which is not even 60 per cent of the target set by the state. Unless and until we do not utilise our full testing capacity, it is difficult to say that the situation will not change much in the near future,” said a senior official.
In the last eight days (since October 1), 619,026 tests were conducted and its per day average comes to only 77,378 tests, which is almost half the state’s target.
“One of the problems behind less testing, the officials pointed out, is contact tracing. Despite the state’s directives on aggressive tracing, the authorities are yet to increase contact tracing. The spread can be reduced only if we could trace maximum people behind one patient,” said another official.