Is 'COVID hotspot' Maharashtra on path of recovery? State government, task force think so

NAGPUR: In 15 out of 36 districts in Maharashtra, the number of people getting discharged is much higher than patients getting admitted in hospital for COVID- 19, which is a “satisfactory and comforting indication”, state medical education minister Amit Deshmukh said here on Monday.

He said the state government had set up jumbo treatment facilities, ramped up testing and ensured effective home isolation to tackle the second wave of the infection, which was “unprecedented and four times stronger than the first one”.

On the drop in numbers and the recovery rate climbing up steadily, the minister told reporters, “This is a satisfactory and comforting indication. I feel restrictions are working and the second wave numbers will soon come down if all of us adhere to COVID-19 norms.”

The state government was planning to get vaccines from the international market to carry out a massive drive covering as many people as possible in a short period of time, the minister added.

“The situation in Maharashtra is coming under control day by day, and that is why we are working on increasing the number of people getting vaccinated. Therefore, the MVA government under Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray is planning to purchase vaccines from the international market in huge numbers,” Deshmukh claimed.

The medical education minister also informed that MBBS examinations for the first, second and third year will be held in the first week of June.

Mumbai may have turned the corner in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic as only 3,792 cases were reported on Monday despite 41,000 tests being conducted to detect the infection, a senior health expert said.

Dr Shashank Joshi, a member of the Maharashtra government’s COVID-19 task force and a renowned endocrinologist, said the turnaround was due to the metropolis tacking the surge with the “ATM strategy”, which is ‘Assess, Triage and Transfer, and Management’.

“Mumbai drops to 3792 cases on 41 k tests clearly we r turning around with ATM strategy of Assess Triage and Transfer and Management congratulations team MCGM.” he tweeted.

As of Sunday, the country’s financial capital had a caseload of 6,27,651 cases, including 12,783 deaths, with the active cases being 75,740.

While Mumbai saw an addition of a record 11,163 cases on April 4, the numbers started dropping over the past few days, with Sunday seeing 5,542 cases.

Dr Joshi, who was mentioned in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Mann Ki Baat’ radio programme on Sunday, told PTI that Mumbai’s second wave peak may be over and the flattening phase could have begun.

“During the first wave, Mumbai used to hardly conduct 15,000 to 18,000 tests. However, during the second wave, the test numbers range between 40,000 and 50,000. Mumbai has passed the peak as cases are plateauing, but the plateau could be longer,” Joshi said.

He added that the second wave the country is facing is “more furious” than expected, which has been the trend worldwide, and appealed to people to adhere to COVID-19 norms strictly even after current restrictions in the state are relaxed.

“Even after restrictions are eased, people need to follow COVID appropriate behavior, mandatory masking policy, zero tolerance for violators etc. We cannot say that the worst is over,” he said.

As per the Mumbai civic body, the number of active cases has gone down to 70,373 while the number of recoveries increased to 5,46,861.

Since the last few days, the number of discharged patients is higher as compared to daily COVID-19 cases, as per the BMC data.

As per the data, Mumbai’s case recovery rate has improved to 87 per cent and the overall growth rate of cases has fallen to 1.09 per cent.

At the same time, the doubling rate of cases is improved to 62 days.