COVID tests may be hiked on rise in cases

For the fourth consecutive day, Maharashtra witnessed more than 5,000 cases, with the state reported 5,760 new cases and 62 COVID-19 deaths on Saturday. With Saturday’s cases, the state’s tally of positive cases rose to 17,74,455 and as many as 46,573 patients succumbed to the disease so far.

Mumbai, meanwhile, reported more than 1,000 cases for the second consecutive day on Saturday with the city registered 1,092 new infections and 17 coronavirus fatalities in the last 24 hours, increasing the total count to 2,74,572 and 10,654 deaths so far.

Health experts have raised concerns over the rising number of coronavirus cases in Mumbai and said that the citizens should understand what Delhi is facing now and must not lower their guard.

“Today, cases are gradually going up in Mumbai, and it is concerning. Therefore, people must remain cautious. We must learn from Delhi and Kerala where the growth rates are going up. People do not wear masks and are taking the situation for granted. The second wave will prove costly for everybody and we must prevent it,” he said.

Dr Subhash Salunkhe, advisor to the state on COVID-19 control and member of a state-appointed committee on communicable diseases, said the state must increase testing.

“There was a downward trend before Diwali, and we are seeing some increase in cases in some cities and districts. Despite appeals from the chief minister, ministers and experts, people have not been adhering to COVID-appropriate behaviour. Besides, the state must increase testing to its full capacity. For instance, Pune conducts around 3,500 tests daily, but it should be increased to 6,500-7,500 tests per day,” Salunkhe said.

N Ramaswami, commissioner, health services, said the department has already directed to increase testing to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

“During the festival season, the number of tests had gone down. We have already instructed our field missions to conduct the maximum number of tests,” he said.

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Free Press Journal