Delhi might be witnessing an uptick in single-day fresh coronavirus infections, but its health minister Satyendar Jain today said that the Covid pandemic was ending and was rather entering an “endemic” phase in the national capital.
“Coronavirus pandemic is ending and is entering an endemic phase in Delhi. Experts say some cases continue to occur in the endemic phase. Delhi witnessed a swine flu outbreak around 10 years ago, but still some cases are reported every year. So, coronavirus is similarly not going to end completely and some cases would keep happening, but we will have to learn to live with it,” Jain said.
The health minister pointed out that Delhi’s Covid positivity rate has been well below 1 per cent, adding that this rate was around 15 per cent in November last year.
“The positivity rate has remained below one per cent for the last two months. The fluctuation in this rate is not that much,” he said.
Jain said that less than 10 per cent beds reserved for coronavirus patients in city hospitals were currently occupied. He also said that the total number of Covid tests conducted in Delhi was around five times the national average.
A section of experts, however, reportedly sought to differ with Jain, asserting that the Covid pandemic must not be taken lightly and that it is only for authorised scientific agencies like the WHO or the ICMR to determine the current status of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, Delhi today recorded 286 new Covid cases and 2 coronavirus-linked deaths, while the positivity rate stood at 0.31 per cent, according to the Delhi government’s latest health bulletin.
The city had yesterday registered 321 coronavirus cases — its highest in nearly oneand- a-half months — and 1 death, and had logged 312 cases and one fatality on 5 March.
Today, the national capital’s coronavirus caseload mounted to 6,41,101 while its death toll climbed to 10,921, the health bulletin said.
The total number of tests comducted was 91,614 — the highest in the city till date — which included 71,250 RTPCR tests and 20,364 rapid antigen tests, the bulletin stated.
The number of people under home isolation rose to 937 from yesterday’s 879.
The Covid patients who recovered during the past 24 hours numbered 260, which took the city’s cumulative tally of such recoveries to 6,28,377.
The total number of hospital beds meant for Covid patients in Delhi stood at 5709, but 5135 beds remained vacant.
The number of containment zones in the city was 938, the bulletin added.
~With inputs from PTI~