For the sixth consecutive day, Maharashtra reported less than 10,000 new COVID-19 cases. 7,347 fresh cases and 184 fatalities was recorded on Friday, pushing its tally to 16,32,544 and 43,015, respectively. Meanwhile, Mumbai too, continued with its decline in new cases by clocking 1,470 new infections and 48 deaths, taking the corresponding tally to 2,48,804, and 9,966 so far.
Despite a steady decline in recorded cases, some districts in the state have seen a jump in COVID-19 fatalities between September 15 and October 15. While the absolute number of deaths has gone down from 6,768 in the last two weeks of September to 4,534 in the first two weeks of October, CFR has spiked in some areas.
A Senior health official said, “If the denominator (confirmed cases) is reduced, the CFR will remain high. CFR will gradually decrease. The positive here is that we are not reporting deaths in the range of 350 to 400, which we did in September.”
Districts such as Chandrapur, Gadchiroli, Sindhudurg and Satara have seen a spike in the recorded deaths between September 15 and October 15. Sindhudurg had 42 deaths on September 15, which rose by 180 per cent to 118 on October 15. Chandrapur had 62 deaths on September 15, which climbed to 203 on October 15 — a jump of 227 per cent. Gadchiroli recorded a five-fold increase in the same period, with the number of deaths rising from five to 25.
“Some districts added their numbers late. Therefore, such a spike is seen during that period. Besides this, late tests and delayed admission in hospitals are also reasons for increase in deaths in rural parts,” he said.
Dr Avinash Supe, member of the expert committee appointed by the state to recommend steps to curb the virus, said that citizens need to take precautions related to their personal hygiene and follow the protocol. The surge may not be as high as we witnessed in September. “With almost everything having been opened up, 70 per cent of the population has not been exposed even today. If we follow the protocol, I think we will continue with the plateau till January. By February onwards, it will drop further to the baseline of the curve,” he said.