Explained: How India is faring amid record surge in Covid-19 cases this week

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As India recorded 346,786 coronavirus disease (Covid-19) infections on Saturday, the country’s tally reached 16,610,481. The single-day death toll also made a new record as 2,624 people died in the past 24 hours, taking the total death tally to 189,544. While the recovery rate stood at 83.92 per cent as around 2.19 lakh people recovered from the disease in the last 24 hours, the active cases in the country were over 25 lakh, comprising around 15 per cent of the total cases.

How did India fare in terms of daily Covid-19 cases this week?

Data provided by the Union health ministry shows a rising trend of Covid-19 in the country. On April 22 and April 23, the country reported the highest number of daily cases in the world. On April 19, the country recorded 273,810 new cases. On April 20, 259,170 new cases were registered in the country. On April 21, 295,041 new cases were registered and on April 22, 314,835 new cases were reported from across the country. 332,730 new cases were reported on April 23.

A frontline worker ignites a funeral pyre of a coronavirus disease (Covid-19) patient who passed away after a hospital caught fire, in Virar, on the outskirts of Mumbai, India.(Reuters)
A frontline worker ignites a funeral pyre of a coronavirus disease (Covid-19) patient who passed away after a hospital caught fire, in Virar, on the outskirts of Mumbai, India.(Reuters)

What about the daily deaths reported in the country?

In a worrying trend, the daily deaths reported in the country have also been on the rise. On April 19, the country reported 1,619 deaths from the disease which rose to 1,761 deaths on April 20, 2,023 deaths on April 21, 2,104 deaths on April 22 and 2,263 deaths on April 23.

What about the country’s vaccination programme?

According to data provided by the Union ministry of health and family welfare, till April 24 the cumulative number of vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 13.83 crore. Cumulatively, 138,379,832 vaccine doses have been which include 9,268,027 HCWs who have taken the 1st dose and 5,951,076 HCWs who have taken the 2nd dose, 11,851,655 FLWs (1stdose), 6,194,851 FLWs (2nddose), 49,145,265 1st dose beneficiaries and 7,165,338 2nd dose beneficiaries more than 60 years old and 46,671,540 (1st dose) and 2,132,080 (2nd dose) beneficiaries aged 45 to 60 years.

People mourn deaths of their relatives in a fire at a Covid-19 hospital in Vasai, Maharashtra. Thirteen Covid-19 patients die in the hospital fire in Maharashtra. (PTI)
People mourn deaths of their relatives in a fire at a Covid-19 hospital in Vasai, Maharashtra. Thirteen Covid-19 patients die in the hospital fire in Maharashtra. (PTI)

Which are the worst hit states in the country?

According to the health ministry, twelve states have been displaying an upwards trajectory in daily new cases. These include Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Karnataka, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Bihar and West Bengal. Maharashtra continues to be the worst affected state reporting a rise in daily new cases since last month. The state reported the highest daily new cases on Friday at 66,836, followed by Uttar Pradesh with 36,605 and Kerala with 28,447 new cases.

An oxygen cylinder sits next to a bed in a makeshift ward at an emergency Covid-19 care center. (Bloomberg)
An oxygen cylinder sits next to a bed in a makeshift ward at an emergency Covid-19 care center. (Bloomberg)

What about the medical oxygen crisis that the country is facing?

Through the week, the country scrambled to move large quantities of medical oxygen to hospitals in areas hit hard by the surge in Covid-19 cases. Several hospitals in Delhi made frantic public calls this week seeking emergency supplies of oxygen. The Centre has allocated 6,822 tonnes of liquid oxygen per day to 20 of the country’s worst-affected states, compared to their combined demand of 6,785 tonnes, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s office said on Thursday. The government has also activated the railways to move multiple tankers from refilling plants to areas which need it the most. The government has also started using the Air Force’s cargo planes to fly empty tankers to production hubs as well as the armed forces which are importing 23 mobile oxygen generation plants from Germany.

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