India reported 70 COVID-19 deaths — the highest in a single day — in the past 24 hours. The total death toll as of Wednesday evening had reached 1,008 and propped India among 17 countries that had over 1,000 deaths. The total confirmed active cases were 22,982 and 7,796 had recovered, the Health Ministry website said in its evening update.
At a conference, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said that in the last three days, India’s doubling rate was 11.3 days. Although global mortality rate was around 7%, India’s was around 3%, and around 86% of those who died had a co-morbidity, he said.
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Data from the State Health Departments put the nationwide death toll at 1,067 and the total number of positive cases at 32,741, with 23,334 active ones.
Preeti Sudan, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, said non-COVID essential medical care ought not be neglected. Patients needing care such as dialysis, cancer treatment, diabetics, pregnant women and those suffering from cardiac ailments must be given adequate care. She also urged States to promote the Arogya Setu App which was a self-assessment tool useful in the prevention efforts of the government, said a press statement. The customary daily briefing for journalists, conducted by the Health Ministry, was not held on Wednesday.
Dr. Vardhan said only 0.33% patients were on ventilators, 1.5% patients on oxygen support and 2.34% patients in ICU, which was a “reflection of the quality of care being provided across the country.”
He said 288 government laboratories were working along with 97 private lab chains with around 16,000 sample collection centres and testing around 60,000 per day.
The World Health Organisation organised a meeting of vaccine manufacturers and regulators from South-East Asia. More than 120 potential vaccine candidates have been proposed globally of which seven are in clinical evaluation and 82 in pre-clinical evaluation.
“The manufacturing capacity that exists in our region [South-East Asia] is of the quality and scale required to produce and roll out a COVID-19 vaccine globally and will play a key role in overcoming the pandemic,” Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia, said in a statement.