India's COVID-19 tally crosses 65 lakh, 75,829 new cases in 24 hrs; aim to vaccinate 25 crore by July, says Harsh Vardhan
The Centre estimates to receive and utilise 40-50 crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine covering 20-25 crore people by July next year, Union health minister Harsh Vardhan said
As the COVID-19 caseload in India crossed 65 lakh with 75,829 new cases on Sunday, while the total number of recoveries rose to 55 lakh, Union health minister Harsh Vardhan said the Centre estimates to receive and utilise 40 to 50 crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine covering 20 to 25 crore people by July.
The toll rose to 1,01,782 lakh with 940 new deaths in 24 hours, as per data from the health ministry. The total coronavirus cases (65,49,373) includes 9,37,625, active cases, which comprises 14.32 percent of the total caseload, as per the data.
The recovery rate stands at 84.13 percent, while the case fatality rate has dropped to 1.55 percent, the ministry added. According to the ICMR, a cumulative total of 7,89,92,534 samples have been tested up to 3 October, with 11,42,131 samples being tested on Saturday.
'Centre estimates 40-50 cr vaccine doses by July'
Vardhan said the Centre is preparing a format for the states to submit by October-end their list of priority population group to receive the vaccine. He said priority will be given to health workers engaged in COVID-19 management in getting the vaccine.
During an interaction with his social media followers on 'Sunday Samvad' platform, he said a high-level expert group is going into all the aspects of vaccines and the health ministry is preparing a format in which states will submit lists of priority population groups.
The list of frontline health workers will include both government as well as private-sector doctors, nurses, paramedics, sanitary staff, ASHA workers, surveillance officers and many other occupational categories who are involved in tracing, testing and treatment of patients.
This exercise is targeted to be completed by the end of October and the states are being closely guided to also submit details about cold chain facilities and other related infrastructure which will be required down to the block level, the minister said.
"The Centre is also working on plans for building capacities in human resources, training, supervision and others on a massive scale and roughly estimates to receive and utilise 400-500 million doses covering approximately 20-25 crore people by July 2021. All this is under various stages of finalisation," Vardhan said.
He further informed his audience that the government is also keeping an eye on immunity data concerning COVID-19 disease while finalising these plans.
"Our government is working round the clock to ensure that there is a fair and equitable distribution of vaccines, once they are ready. Our utmost priority is how to ensure a vaccine for each and everybody in the country," Vardhan said.
Under 10L active cases for 13 days straight
For the 13th day in an "unbroken string", India has maintained its steady trend of clocking less than 10 lakh active cases of COVID-19 , the Union health ministry said on Sunday.
It also said that an average of 11.5 lakh tests for detection of coronavirus infection were done on a daily basis during the past ten days.
From merely one test conducted in January 2020, India's total tests for detection of COVID-19 have crossed 7.89 crore so far. There has been a commensurate dip in the COVID-19 positivity rate, it said.
"With progressively falling positivity rate, testing has worked as a highly effective tool to limit the spread of COVID-19 infection," the ministry highlighted.
There are 9,37,625 active cases of COVID-19 as on date, which is7,371 cases fewer than Saturday.
8,000 patients discharged from LNJP hospital since March
Around 8,000 coronavirus patients have so far been discharged from the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan (LNJP) Hospital in Delhi after recovering from the infection, the highest in any government hospital across the country, PTI reported.
As many as 331 women, who tested COVID-19 positive, have given birth in the hospital, also the highest in the country.
According to the hospital's medical director Suresh Kumar, LNJP was declared a dedicated COVID-19 facility on 17 March, and since then, 11,415 patients have been admitted. These included people who suspected they had the disease but then tested negative, he said.
"As many as 7,919 coronavirus patients have been discharged from the hospital after recovery. Besides, around 2,700 people who got admitted to the hospital with COVID-like symptoms were sent home after they tested negative," Kumar said.
"Around 1,450 coronavirus patients have received dialysis at LNJP so far. Also, 59 COVID-19 patients have undergone successful surgeries related to orthopaedic problems, gallbladder stone, piles, liver and lung abscess at the hospital," Kumar said.
The total number of recoveries in the hospital since March include 420 children. Around 10 percent of them were severe cases, according to Dr Urmila Jhamb a paediatrician at the hospital.
'Bumpy coronavirus situation until Christmas'
UK prime minister Boris Johnson on Sunday warned of a "bumpy ride" till December as the country recorded more than 10,000 new coronavirus cases in a day for the first time since mass testing for the deadly virus was put in place.
According to official figures, there were 12,872 new cases on Saturday, while a further 49 people have died within 28 days of testing positive for COVID-19 .
However, the government said a technical issue meant some cases from earlier in the week were not recorded at the time so these were included in Saturday's data.
In his interview, Johnson tried to strike a note of optimism over progress in beating the virus and said he believed over the "next few weeks and months" the "scientific equation will change, whether that is vaccines or testing".
"I've got to tell you in all candour it's going to continue to be bumpy through to Christmas, it may even be bumpy beyond," Johnson told the BBC. "This could be a very tough winter for all of us we've got to face that fact," he said.
The 940 new fatalities include 278 from Maharashtra, 100 from Karnataka, 65 from Tamil Nadu, 62 from West Bengal, 61 from Punjab, 60 from Uttar Pradesh, 41 from Andhra Pradesh and 34 from Delhi.
A total of 1,01,782 deaths have been reported thus far in the country including 37,758 from Maharashtra followed by 9,718 from Tamil Nadu, 9,219 from Karnataka, 5,977 from Uttar Pradesh, 5,941 from Andhra Pradesh, 5,472 from Delhi, 5,132 from West Bengal, 3,562 from Punjab and 3,487 from Gujarat.
With inputs from agencies
The CM made the remarks during Narendra Modi's video conference with chief ministers of the eight states with the highest number of COVID-19 cases
Moderna, which created its shots with the US National Institutes of Health, said it got the final needed results over the weekend that suggest the vaccine is more than 94 percent effective
The country has secured COVID-19 vaccines for 60 million people from pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, and for a further 25 million people from biotech firm Moderna