Even as the doubling rate of the city is decreasing and the growth rate of the infection is increasing, the number of containment zones and sealed buildings in the city have shown a sharp decline. Since September, when the city witnessed a spike in the COVID-19 cases, the number of sealed buildings has reduced by 55 per cent.
There were 10,450 sealed buildings on September 30 and the number has come down to 4,790 as on September 28. The number of containment zones in slums has also reduced from 665 on September 30 to 407 as on November 28. The overall positivity rate (case reported) of the city is at 15 per cent, as per the data of BMC's public health department.
The highest number of containment zones (58) currently is in G North ward (Dharavi, Dadar, Mahim) followed by K east ward (Andheri (east), Vile Parle) and N ward (Ghatkopar, Vikhroli) with 40 containment zones.
The G south ward (Prabhadevi and Worli) areas, which were termed as the very first COVID-19 hotspot, have zero containment zones.
The R central ward ( Borivali and Parts of Charkop) and R south ward (Kandivali and Charkop) have the highest number of sealed buildings -- 643 and 503, respectively.
In September, after Ganesh Chaturthi, there was a surge in COVID-19 cases. The daily cases reported crossed the 2,000-mark. The total number of active cases crossed 34,000. Since the last week of October, the daily caseload has come down sharply and the total number of active cases is around 13,008 at present.
BMC officials said fewer positive cases are being reported in a cluster. “There are fewer cases in buildings, but we are regularly setting up health camps, and testing camps in areas where a higher number of cases are being reported. Cases reported from each ward on a daily basis are scattered ones, not in clusters,” said Suresh Kakani, additional municipal commissioner (health).
Kakani added that even though the number of tests conducted daily had been scaled up to above 20,000, daily positive cases hardly crossed 1,000. "The number of cases reported daily is below 1,000 now. The growth rate is affected slightly, but we will be able to work that out soon,” he said.
The BMC is now focusing on those returning to the city, particularly migrant workers who had left for their hometowns after the lockdown in April. As part of the survey under the state government’s My Family, My Responsibility campaign, BMC had compiled a list of 12,000 homes in slum pockets that were reported as locked. These homes will now be revisited by BMC staff and those living in it will be made to undergo a health check-up and COVID-19 test, if necessary.