Covid curve continues to flatten in Haryana

Hitting yet another low for a sixth week in succession, Haryana reported 2,161 fresh coronavirus cases last week (December 28-January 3) as infection curve continued to flatten.

A figure as low as this was last recorded in the state more than six months ago in the first week of June when 2,357 infections were reported.

Health department data showed that last week’s count was also less by 1,102 cases as compared to the week before (December 21-27) when 3,263 new infections were reported. The sample positivity rate also declined to 5.7% . The case fatality rate was 1.1% and the recovery rate stood at 97.8%, officials said.

While the infection rate continued to fall down and sampling also remained at an all-time high, there are now indications that sampling will get reduced gradually, officials said.

As per the sampling data, the state health department has tested over 14.49 lakh people in the past six weeks (from November 23 till January 3) and more than 90% of the suspects were tested using RT-PCR kits. However, the sampling numbers declined last week with about 1.82 lakh people getting tested in comparison to over 2.27 lakh tested the week before.

A record 2.81 lakh people were tested across the state during November 23-29 followed by 2.79 lakh people during November 30-December 6, 2.43 lakh during December 7-13, 2.36 lakh during December 14-20, and 2.27 lakh during December 21-27.

Seven of the 22 districts continued to have a critical positivity rate of more than 6% though it’s on a continuous decline with every passing week.

Faridabad’s positivity rate has come down to 10.4% while Gurugram’s has dropped to 8.4%. Rewari’s positivity rate has dropped to 7.9% followed by Panchkula at 7.1%. Panipat’s positivity rate has come down to 6.5% followed by Ambala at 6.3% and Hisar at 6.1%.

Thirteen districts — Karnal, Mahendergarh, Sonepat, Rohtak, Kurukshetra, Fatehabad, Sirsa, Bhiwani, Yamunanagar, Palwal, Jind, Kaithal and Jhajjar — have positivity rate of less than or 6%, but higher than the desirable positivity rate of less than 2%.

Kaithal and Jhajjar with a positivity rate of 2.7% and 2.4%, respectively are close to touching the desirable positivity rate. Charkhi Dadri (1.4%) and Nuh (1.1%) continued to maintain their desirable positivity rate of less than 2% for the last six weeks.

Vaccine dry run across the state on January 7

The Haryana health department will conduct a dry run across the state on January 7 as a precursor to the Covid-19 vaccine roll-out.

ACS, health, Rajeev Arora, said the dry run will help the state to identify the challenges in operational and technical aspects of vaccine administration and help to review the preparedness at the district and block levels and gather empirical data.

“The amount of vaccine available and prioritisation of population groups for vaccination will depend on what the central government decides. As far as fixing the date to start inoculation, we will expeditiously roll it out once the vaccine becomes available. The platform of existing universal immunisation programme with enhanced capacities is being used for Covid-19 vaccination. Data of more than 1.9 lakh healthcare workers, both from private and government sectors, have been uploaded on CoWIN portal,” he added.

The ACS said department has already identified 19,000 vaccination session sites and about 5,145 vaccinators have been mapped for the process of administering the vaccine. For ensuring that vaccine reaches every district in proper cold chain, the health department will deploy 22 vaccine vans for transporting vaccine across the state.

He said vaccine introduction will span over a year with multiple groups being included sequentially starting from healthcare workers.

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