COVID-19: India reports 7K+ infections; 23 new Omicron cases
India on Thursday reported over 7,000 new COVID-19 cases with an active caseload of over 78,000. Active cases now account for just 0.23% of the total cases, the lowest since March 2020. The recovery rate was recorded at 98.40%, the highest since March 2020. Meanwhile, India's daily positivity rate was recorded at 0.62%. It has been under 2% for the last 80 days.
- India on Thursday reported a marginally higher number of COVID-19 cases than the day before.
- While the overall COVID-19 situation in the country is relatively stable, the rising cases of the Omicron variant have sparked concerns.
- Various states have stepped up preventive measures to curb the spread of Omicron.
- Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will chair a review meeting Thursday on the COVID-19 situation.
According to the Union Health Ministry, India reported a total of 3,47,65,976 COVID-19 cases till Thursday morning. The death toll reached 4,78,759. With 6,960 fresh discharges, India's recoveries stand at 3,42,08,926. In the past 24 hours, 7495 new cases and 434 fresh fatalities were reported. The weekly positivity rate was recorded at 0.59%. It has remained under 1% the last 39 days.
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 2020. 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 2 crore-mark on May 4, 2021.
Maharashtra reported 1,201 new COVID-19 cases along with 953 more recoveries. Kerala, the second worst-hit state after Maharashtra, reported 3,205 new cases and 3,012 discharges. The third worst-hit Karnataka added 321 new cases and 253 recoveries. Tamil Nadu, the fourth worst-hit state, reported 604 new cases and 695 recoveries. Andhra Pradesh reported 103 new cases and 175 recoveries.
Till 1 pm on Thursday, India had administered over 139.8 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses. Overall, over 56.5 crore people have been fully vaccinated, while over 83.3 crore people have received at least one dose. On Thursday alone, India administered roughly 21.6 lakh more COVID-19 vaccine doses till 1 pm, including over 17.3 lakh second doses and nearly 4.3 lakh first doses, according to Co-WIN.
Meanwhile, India's tally of Omicron cases has reached 236, with cases detected in 16 states and union territories. Maharashtra reported the highest number of COVID-19 cases involving the Omicron variant: 65. The other worst-affected regions include Delhi (64 Omicron cases), followed by Telangana (24), Rajasthan (21), Karnataka (19), Kerala (15), and Gujarat (14). A total of 104 patients infected with Omicron have been discharged.
Oxford University and AstraZeneca have reportedly begun work to produce a new version of their coronavirus vaccine targeting Omicron. Preliminary steps in producing the updated vaccine have been taken in case it is needed, Sandy Douglas, a research group leader at Oxford, said. "Adenovirus-based vaccines [like the one made by Oxford/AstraZeneca] could in principle be used to respond to any new variant more rapidly."