Bangalore has one of the lowest numbers of coronavirus cases and deaths related to covid-19 among big cities.
Coronavirus in Bangalore: With 366,946 coronavirus cases as of June 18, India is now at the fourth position in terms of most affected countries in the world only behind the US, Brazil and Russia.
While state-wise, Maharashtra contributed (113,445 cases) the most to India’s tally, city-wise, Mumbai tops the list with 60,228 cases and 3,167 deaths, followed by Delhi (44,688 cases and 1,837 deaths). Chennai (34,245 cases and 422 deaths) is not far behind, so is Kolkata.
But Bangalore, among cities with a population of 10 million or more, has recorded a very low number of covid-19 cases and fatalities due to the corornavirus, IE reported. As of June 18, the city has reported only 827 confirmed cases and just 43 deaths related to Covid-19, way too lower than other major cities.
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How Bangalore managed to keep the number of covid-19 cases at a low level even though the city was among the first in the country to report covid-19 cases? On March 9, a US-returned software engineer tested positive for covid-19 in the city.
Quarantining covid-19 positive cases and tracing contacts within 24 hours of a positive result, according to health experts, have done this wonder. Health workers and officials from the city’s civic bodies’ visited door-to-door to check on people. Dr Giridhar R Babu, member of the ICMR National Task Force for Covid-19, said, “If I have to summarise the Bengaluru model in one sentence, it is the retrospective tracing of contacts.”
To further control the surge in covid-19 cases, Bangalore has put primary and secondary contacts of positive covid-19 cases in institutional quarantine, a practice other metros couldn’t follow due to a higher number of positive cases.
Apart from the higher number of testing and tracing, the administration also used data more effectively, say experts. The city administration is using as many as six apps, developed exclusively for functions ranging from contact tracing to quarantine watch, along with daily data analysis for helping officials devising strategies to limit the spread.
In the early stages, especially during the lockdown period, the city had opted for random testing. A few areas, in which most cases were found, declared containment zones. The administration also shut big markets, crowded places in the early period of lockdown, which according to experts, helped a lot to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
After the lockdown as lifted, though partially and in phases, the number of cases starts rising faster in the city. According to the data from the health department, there were only 358 cases, 10 deaths and five ICU patients in Bengaluru during the time period between March 8 and May 31. The number of cases rose to 469 and fatalities to 33 until June 17. In order to tackle the rising number of cases, the government on June 15 set up 17 task forces headed by IAS officers. The government has also announced measures like dedicated covid hospitals only for symptomatic positives and utilising institutional facilities such as hotels for asymptomatic patients.