COVID-19: India reports 58K+ cases; Omicron tally crosses 2K-mark
India on Wednesday added 243 new COVID-19 cases involving the Omicron variant. Maharashtra topped the list of worst-hit states with 653 total Omicron cases, followed by Delhi (464 cases). Overall, India reported over 58,000 COVID-19 cases on Wednesday. The active caseload rose to 2.14 lakh, accounting for 0.61% of the total cases. Currently, India's recovery rate stands at 98.01%.
Why does it matter?
- India has been witnessing a fresh surge in COVID-19 cases over the past week.
- The weekly positivity rate and active caseload have also witnessed a sharp rise following a steep decline for weeks.
- Meanwhile, India's Omicron tally has crossed the 2,000-mark, with the variant being detected in at least 24 states and union territories.
15K+ patients discharged
According to the Union Health Ministry, India reported a total of 3,50,18,358 COVID-19 cases till Wednesday morning. The death toll reached 4,82,551. With 15,389 fresh discharges, India's recoveries stand at 3,43,21,803. In the past 24 hours, 58,097 new cases and 534 fresh fatalities were reported. The weekly positivity rate was recorded at 2.60%, while the daily positive rate is at 4.18%.
India's second wave peaked on May 7
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 two crore-mark on May 4, 2021.
Maharashtra adds most new cases
Maharashtra reported 18,466 new COVID-19 cases along with 4,558 more recoveries. Kerala, the second worst-hit state after Maharashtra, reported 3,640 new cases and 2,363 discharges. The third worst-hit Karnataka added 2,479 new cases and 288 recoveries. Tamil Nadu, the fourth worst-hit state, reported 2,731 new cases and 674 recoveries. Andhra Pradesh reported 334 new cases and 95 recoveries.
Over 147 crore vaccine doses administered
Till 12 pm on Wednesday, India administered nearly 147.9 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses. Overall, nearly 61.6 crore people have been fully vaccinated, while over 86.2 crore people have received at least one dose. On Wednesday alone, India administered more than 14.7 lakh COVID-19 vaccine doses till 12 pm, including over 4.3 lakh second doses and roughly 10.3 lakh first doses, according to Co-WIN.
India's Omicron tally reaches 2,135
Meanwhile, India's tally of Omicron cases has reached 2,135, with cases detected in 24 states and union territories. The worst-affected regions include Maharashtra (653 Omicron cases), Delhi (464), Kerala (185), Rajasthan (174), Gujarat (154), Tamil Nadu (121), Telangana (84), and Karnataka (77).
In-principle nod for Bharat Biotech's intranasal vaccine
Separately, the Subject Expert Committee of the Drugs Controller General of India has granted "in-principle" approval to Bharat Biotech to conduct "Phase III superiority study & Phase III booster dose study" for its intranasal COVID-19 vaccine BBV154. The DCGI has also asked them to submit the protocols for approval. Evidently, an intranasal vaccine would be easier to administer in mass vaccination campaigns.