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Devbrat Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: With Odisha witnessing over 1300 daily cases for the past one week, situation continues to remain grim in a few districts, especially those which have turned hotspots lately. The unsettling fact is the coronavirus reproduction number or R0 value of the State, which is higher than high burden zones like Delhi, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat. Odisha's estimated R0 value of 1.27 is going neck and neck with Andhra Pradesh, reveals the latest findings of IIT-Delhi.

Even as close to 50 per cent of the total Covid-19 cases have emerged from Ganjam, Khordha, Cuttack, the big shocker is there has been a shift of coronavirus burden from these hotspots to places like Rayagada, Sambalpur, Sundergarh, Bargarh and some other districts.

The IIT-Delhi study based on AICSEIR model further notes that every Covid-infected patient in Kalahandi and Sambalpur district is infecting almost 2 more persons. While Kalakandi has an R0 value of 1.79, R0 of Sambalpur is estimated at 1.91. Next in line are Dhenkanal (1.25), Rayagada (1.11), Sonepur (0.97), Malkangiri (0.96), Kandhamal (0.89) and Sundergarh (0.86), where cases are growing rapidly.

Let's take a look at the potential hotspots. Khordha accounts for 2876 active cases while Ganjam's active caseload is 2008, consequently due to the recent spikes and high recoveries. Slowly and steadily, the State's recovery rate has gone up to 71.3%.

As projected by the IIT-Delhi model, Odisha was supposed to reach 50.4k cases by August 18, but the State is likely to touch the figures by August 11-12, much ahead of Aug 18. Moreover, IIT-Delhi has predicted Odisha's positive count to be around 1.6 lakh by September 3, which hints at a possible peak in the coming days.

As of now, Assam, Manipur, Nagaland belonging to India's NER lead in the secondary infection rate, followed by the states of Bihar, Punjab, Jharkhand, UP. Delhi reportedly has the lowest R0 value of 0.08 in the country; it has been able to maintain a low positivity rate of around 6% with a recovery rate as high as 90%.

However, the Covid death per million people in Delhi is a massive 220.78, in comparison to the national rate of 33.08. On the other hand, Odisha's death per million stood at 7.27 as on August 10.

Reducing the R0 is the key to bringing down further transmission of infections, as is being said, mainly because there are still many uninfected and vulnerable persons who, if are not taken care of, can be potential victims of the lethal virus.

More Related Stories:

Covid-19 Claims 10 More Lives In Odisha, Toll Rises to 296

COVID-19: With Record 23K Plus Tests, Odisha Reports 1,341 New Cases

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