Maharashtra sees 3,431 new infections in 24 hours
BL Soni

Maharashtra on Friday reported 3,431 new infections and 71 covid-19 deaths in the last 24 hours, pushing its tally to 19,13,382 with 49,129 fatalities till now. Mumbai, meanwhile recorded 596 new cases and 11 covid-19 deaths on Thursday, increasing the total count to 2,89,800, with 11,056 fatalities so far. The doubling rate of cases has now increased to 359 days, while weekly growth has dropped to 0.21 per cent.

“Of the 71 deaths reported today, 39 occurred in the last 48 hours and 5 in the last week. The remaining 27 deaths are from the period before last week. Out of the 27 deaths, 11 occurred in Wardha, 8 in Thane, 2 in Nagpur, 2 in Gondia, 2 in Satara, 1 in Chandrapur and 1 in Solapur,” said Dr Pradip Awate, state surveillance officer.

Maharashtra continued to control its daily caseload as it has not crossed 5,000 for the past 20 days. A total of 98,503 cases have been reported in December, against the 109,166 during November 1-24.

But experts still want people and authorities to be extra cautious for two reasons — first, the concern of a surge from next month and second, a new variant of Covid-19 found in the UK.

They have also clarified that there is no need to revise our treatment protocol as of now, as the new variant is more infectious but it is yet to be proven that it is more harmful, said Dr Rahul Pandit, member of the state-appointed task force for the clinical management of critical patients.

“We don’t know its virulence yet. All we know is it is more infectious, meaning it spreads faster than the older strains. It has affected more people from the age group of 30 to 60 years, but this also could be a coincidence because that population is still out the most. I personally don’t think we can correlate this with the new variant,” said Dr Pandit, who is also director, critical care, Fortis Hospital, Mulund.

He also said that they don’t need to revise the treatment protocol at this moment. “We may need to revise our testing protocol, because we have come to know that patients are testing positive early after exposure to the virus, compared to the previous version.

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