Coronavirus: India reports 44K+ new cases; nearly 500 more dead
India on Friday reported over 44,000 new COVID-19 cases, the second consecutive day that daily infections remained above 40,000. Active cases in India have risen to 1.06% of the total cases, while the recovery rate declined further to 97.6%. Kerala, which is leading India's latest surge in infections, continued to contribute nearly 70% of all new infections. Here are more details.
India's tally crosses 3.26 crore; 4.36 lakh dead
According to the Union Health Ministry, till Friday morning, India reported a total of 3,26,03,188 COVID-19 cases. The death toll has reached 4,36,861. So far, 3,18,21,428 patients have recovered, while 3,44,899 cases involve active infections. In the past 24 hours alone, India recorded 44,658 new infections, 32,988 more discharges, and 496 fresh fatalities. 61,22,08,542 vaccine doses have been administered so far.
India's second wave peaked on May 7
To recall, India's second wave peaked on May 7, when 4.14 lakh single-day cases were reported, over four times the number of cases reported during the first wave in mid-September. Although infections have declined since the second wave peaked, India crossed the three crore-mark on June 23. India had crossed the one crore-mark on December 19, 2020, and the two crore-mark on May 4.
Over 67% new cases concentrated in Kerala
Maharashtra reported 5,108 new COVID-19 cases along with 4,736 more recoveries. Kerala, the second worst-hit state after Maharashtra, reported 30,077 new cases and 18,997 discharges. Meanwhile, the third worst-hit Karnataka added 1,213 new cases and 1,206 recoveries. Tamil Nadu, the fourth worst-hit state, reported 1,559 new cases and 1,816 recoveries. Andhra Pradesh reported 1,539 new cases and 1,140 recoveries.
Government issues clarification on reduction in Covishield dose gap
Meanwhile, amid reports that the government may be considering a reduced dose gap between the two shots of Covishield (developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca), National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) chairperson Dr. NK Arora clarified that no such plan is in consideration as of now. Currently, India is administering Covishield with a gap of 12-16 weeks between the two doses.
50% adults get at least one vaccine dose
On that note, half of India's adult population has received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccines. Currently, only those aged over 18 are eligible for vaccination. Zydus Cadila's ZyCoV-D—the only vaccine approved for those in the age group 12-18—is yet to be rolled out. Overall, over 10% of India's total population has been fully vaccinated, while 35% has received at least one dose.