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A very low share of RT-PCR tests are reported in the highest burden states, such as Maharashtra, Punjab, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat and Kerala. These states have reported higher positivity rates and the containment measures are also inadequate to control COVID-19, according to the government officials.
Senior officials have highlighted that the next four weeks will be very critical as the coronavirus pandemic is spreading rapidly than the earlier. Niti Aayog member Dr V K Paul said that the intensity of the pandemic has increased much more. In few states, the pandemic is worse but the upsurge is seen all over the country.
Maharashtra witnessed a rapid rise in cases and is accounting for 57.42% of total number of active cases. The state also saw a drop in RT-PCR tests in the last few weeks. Only 60% of tests were RT-PCR as against 71.6% during 10-16 February were conducted.
Seven out of 10 districts are having a huge number of active cases in Maharashtra. Besides Maharashtra, the Centre has expressed concern over Chhattisgarh and Punjab. Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said that the share of RT-PCR tests in Chhattisgarh is only around 30% and in Punjab the tests include over 76%. The share is constantly falling along with the total number of tests conducted. It has been suggested to the state governments to increase the percentage of RT-PCR tests to 70% or above.
Officials said that even though the number of new cases is increasing with the mortality numbers, India is still better than other countries. Paul said that in terms of the population size and deaths per million, India is doing well and the coronavirus pandemic is in control.
Source: ET Healthworld