Early indications of Covid infections plateauing have been reported in some places but the trend needs to be observed, the Union government said on Thursday whilst noting that 400 districts have logged weekly Covid positivity of over 10 per cent.
Stressing the need to continue with precautions to curb the surge in infections, it noted that Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan were recording a high number of Covid cases.
However, a decrease in Covid cases and positivity rate have been observed in Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Odisha, Haryana and West Bengal, the government stated.
Addressing a press conference here, Lav Agarwal, the joint secretary in the Health Ministry said, “A clear trend in terms of fewer Covid cases requiring oxygen-supported beds or ICU beds has been observed.” “Also, active COVID-19 cases and corresponding deaths are much lower during the present wave compared to earlier surges,” he said.
Warning against any lax in observing Covid-appropriate behaviour, Agarwal said 400 districts have reported over 10 per cent weekly Covid positivity while in 141 districts it was between five to 10 per cent in the week ending January 26.
About the prevalence of the Omicron variant of coronavirus in India, he said, 1,292 cases of the latest variant of concern were found on genome sequencing in December which rose to 9,672 in January.
The top 10 states in terms of active Covid cases were contributing over 77 per cent of total active infections in the country, Agarwal said, adding 11 states have over 50,000 active Covid cases while Karnataka, Maharashtra and Kerala have over 3 lakh active infections.
In response to a question, he said, “Early indications of Covid cases plateauing have been reported in some places but the trend needs to be observed and precautions need to be continued.” About the vaccine coverage, the press conference was informed that 97.03 lakh healthcare, frontline workers and comorbid people aged 60 and above have been given the precaution dose of Covid vaccine.
Also, 59 per cent of adolescents in the 15-18 year age group have so far received the first dose of Covid vaccine.
The health ministry stressed that vaccination is providing support in terms of fewer cases, fewer hospitalizations and less severity in COVID-19 cases.