From Our Bureau  

10th SEPTEMBER 2020    

India witnessed a big spurt with 95,735 fresh COVID-19 positive cases reported on Thursday, the highest ever daily tally, taking the country’s cumulative cases to 44,65,843. The death toll rose to 75,062, with 1,172 fatalities recorded in the last 24 hours.

Incidentally, India has moved to the second place now in total number of COVID-19 positive cases among the countries across the world. It ranks next to the United States in overall number of cases. India now ranks third in total number of fatalities, after the United States and Brazil, which occupy the top two slots. Moreover, the daily tally of cases and deaths in India is the highest among all the countries across the globe now.

Of the 95,735 new cases reported in the last 24 hours in the country, almost 60 percent of the cases are reported from only five States. Maharashtra has alone contributed more than 23,000 and Andhra Pradesh has contributed more than 10,000.

The total number of recovered cases reached 34,71,783 today, with 72,939 cases reporting recovery in the last 24 hours. Recovered cases now account for 77.74 percent of all positive cases.  

The total number of active cases in the country stands at 9,19,018 as on date, accounting for 20.58 percent of the total positive cases.

More than 74 percent of the Total Active Cases are in 9 most affected States. Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh presently contribute 49 percent of total active cases. Maharashtra is leading this tally with more than 2,50,000 whereas Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh follow with more than 97,000 each.

A total of 1,172 deaths have been registered in the past 24 hours. The case fatality rate dropped to 1.68 percent as on date. About 32 percent of these deaths are from Maharashtra with 380 deaths followed by Karnataka with 128 deaths and Tamil Nadu with 78 deaths.

Of the total deaths, 69 percent are concentrated in five States and Union territory–  Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Delhi.

The total number of samples tested rose to 5,29,34,433, with 11,29,756 tests conducted in the last 24 hours.

Health Ministry urges States/UTs to Mandatorily retest all Symptomatic Negative Cases of Rapid Antigen Tests through RT-PCR

Union Health Ministry has noted that in some large States, symptomatic negative cases tested by Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) are not being followed up by RT-PCR testing.

The Guidelines of ICMR as well as the Union Health Ministry clearly state that the following two specific categories of persons must necessarily be retested through RT-PCR tests:

All symptomatic (fever or cough or breathlessness) negative cases of Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT). (eom)

Asymptomatic negative cases of RAT that develop symptoms within 2 to 3 days of being tested negative. 

In this background, the Union Health Ministry and ICMR have jointly written to all the States/UTs and urged them to ensure that the all symptomatic negative cases of RAT are mandatorily retested using the RT-PCR test.

This is necessary to ensure that such symptomatic negative cases do not remain untested and do not spread the disease among their contacts. This will also ensure early detection and isolation/hospitalization of such false negatives.

It has also been reiterated in the joint letter that while the RAT is being used to increase access and availability of testing in the field, RT-PCR remains the gold standard of COVID tests.

The Union Health Ministry has also urged the States/UTs to urgently establish a monitoring mechanism in every district (a designated officer or a team) and at the State level to follow up such cases. These teams shall analyse details of RAT conducted on a daily basis in the Districts and State and ensure that there are no delays in retesting of all symptomatic negative cases.

The aim of States/UTs should be to ensure that no potentially positive case is missed out. They have also been advised to undertake an analysis on a regular basis to monitor the incidence of positives during the RT-PCR tests conducted as a follow up. (eom)

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