New Delhi: The Union Health Ministry on Friday said that before lockdown, COVID-19 cases were doubling in 3 days but the last 7 days' data shows that it is 6.2 days now and in 19 states and Union Territories, the case doubling rate is less than the country's average.
At the daily press briefing, Joint Secretary, Health, Lav Agarwal said the reduction in the doubling rate is the product of the management of the health crisis at the field level. He said that 5 lakh rapid antibody test kits are being distributed to states, which are burdened with a high number of positive cases.
"An average Growth Factor of 1.2 since 1st April 2020, as compared to 2.1 in the two weeks proceeding that (15th March to 31st March) is observed, which is about a 40 per cent decline (2.1-1.2)/2.1 in growth factor," he said.
He insisted that before the lockdown, India's doubling rate was about 3 days. "For the past seven days, the doubling rate is 6.2 days. 19 States/UTs (Kerala, Uttarakhand, Haryana, Ladakh, Himachal, Chandigarh, Puducherry, Bihar, Odisha, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, UP, Karnataka, J&K, Punjab, Assam, Tripura) are presently showing a higher doubling rate, which is better than the national average, which reflects that rate of increase of cases in these places has been reduced to some extent," said Agarwal.
He added that the production of ancillary support devices such as personal protective equipment, oxygen concentrators, ventilators, and CSIR engineering labs is being augmented by indigenous designs of Sree Chitra Tiurumalai Institute of Medical Science and Technology (SCTIMST) under DST
Agarwal also said that the Group of Ministers (GoM) on COVID-19 had a detailed discussion on the impact of extended lockdown and to create a further roadmap. "GoM also reviewed the efforts by Science & Technology institutions to deal with COVID-19 in diagnosis, vaccines, drugs, hospital equipment accessories and general wellness," he added.
The total number of COVID-19 cases was 13,789 and 1,853 had recovered while the death toll stood at 457.
The COVID-19 cases jumped by 1,463; 1,118, and 1,043 on the three days respectively from Tuesday this week, according to official data from the Health ministry and the states.
Dealing on the recovery of the patients, Agarwal said that 13.06 per cent is the recovery rate of patients from coronavirus infection and the outcome ratio, which is cases recovered from the viral infection, is better than other countries and the government is trying to improve it further.
Emphasising on the health infrastructure to fight the infection, he said: "1,919 dedicated COVID-19 hospitals with 1.73 lakh isolation beds, 21,800 ICU beds are ready in the country." An Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) official said 3,19,400 COVID-19 tests have been conducted so far and 28,340 tests in the past 24 hours.