India’s COVID-19 caseload sprinted past 45 lakh and the death toll climbed to 76,271 with a record 96,551 infections and 1,209 fatalities being reported in a day, while the recoveries crossed 35 lakh on Friday, according to the Union Health Ministry data.
The total coronavirus cases mounted to 45,62,414, while the recoveries surged to 35,42,663, the data updated at 8 am showed.
The COVID-19 case fatality rate has further dropped to 1.67 per cent while the recovery rate was recorded at 77.65 per cent.
There are 9,43,480 active cases of COVID-19 in the country which comprises 20.68 per cent of the total caseload, the data stated.
The country had recorded over 95,000 cases on Wednesday and Thursday. Govt said 60% of the total 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 active cases in the country stands at 9,19,018, as on date. More than 74% of the Total Active Cases are in 9 most affected States. Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh presently contribute 49% 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. 32% of deaths reported yesterday are from Maharashtra with 380 deaths followed by Karnataka with 128 deaths, and Tamil Nadu with 78 deaths. Of the total deaths, 69% are concentrated in five States/UT of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Delhi and Andhra Pradesh.
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-PCT 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 RAT and 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. 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. 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.