Explained: Why is Kerala reporting such high COVID-19 numbers; why public health response is a problem
Kerala has imposed complete lockdown on weekend amid surging Covid-19 cases.
Complete lockdown has been announced in Kerala on July 31 and August 1 due to rising Covid-19 cases in the state.
On Wednesday recorded 22,056 fresh Covid-19 cases pushing the infection caseload to 33,27,301, with the number of people who succumbed to the virus rising to 16,457 with 131 more deaths. These numbers continued to account for over 50% of India’s new cases for the second straight day.
Kerala, in mid-May 2021 was reporting a high of more than 43,000 new cases every day. This number started declining from mid-May 2021 to 1st week of June 2021.
However, from 3rd week of June 2021 to till date, daily new cases in Kerala have seen a gradual and consistent increase. Recently, Kerala reported more than 22,000 new cases in a day. This is more than 50% of the peak witnessed by Kerala in mid-May 2021.
Since 1st week of June till date, Kerala is also reporting high number of daily covid deaths. In 1st week of June 2021, the daily new covid deaths in Kerala were as high as 227 and today they are still high of more than 150 deaths a day.
In the country, total number of active cases are only 4 lakh 3 thousand. Out of this, 1 lakh 50 thousand active cases are in Kerala alone.
In average daily new cases, in the last 8 weeks Kerala has seen a 13% increase.
In average daily deaths, in the last 8 weeks Kerala has seen a range of 97 average daily deaths to 174 average daily new deaths.
In the last 8 weeks, the weekly positivity trend in Kerala has been between 10.5% to 14.8%. In the last 8 weeks, the positivity percentage has never declined below 10% in the State.
The average daily new tests in the last 8 weeks have seen almost 13% decline in Kerala. In the week of 3rd to 9th June 2021, average daily new tests were more than 1,11,000. However, in the week of 22nd to 28th July 2021, average daily new tests have declined to 96,00,500.
The daily Covid tests in Kerala touched its highest peak on Wednesday as the total number of tests carried out in 24 hours reached 1,49,534. Meanwhile, Kerala has had the lowest exposure to Sars-Cov-2, according to true infection estimates based on serological studies, new data by the Union government showed on Wednesday, with only 44% of the population projected to have been infected till early July compared to nearly 67% across the country as a whole.
The results, based on the study of how many people had antibodies in a survey involving nearly 29,000 people, appear to explain Kerala’s current high numbers and suggest the state was able to detect true infections better than any other region. The study was carried out by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
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