Govt asks 4 states, which account for 59% of active cases, to check surge

A health worker collects swab sample from COVID suspected woman at Anand Vihar bus terminal, in New Delhi
Four states including Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal which make up for more than 59 per cent of the total active Covid-19 cases in the country, have been asked by the Central government to take prompt steps and keep a ‘strict vigil’ to curb recent spike in Covid-19 cases.

Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan has written to these states drawing their attention to the low and declining testing rates and said that any laxity at this crucial junction may squander the results of our collective actions in containing the transmission.

Government is concerned over the dip in the overall tests in the past two weeks in Kerala combined with an increase in the positivity rate which has been consistently above 11 per cent for the past two weeks, as against the national positivity figure of less than 2.5 per cent for the same period.

A team led by S K Singh, Director, National Centre for Disease Control, has been rushed by the Centre to Kerala to review the public health interventions in management of Covid- 19 by the state government.

While Kerala accounts for around 28.61 per cent of the total active cases in the country, Maharashtra contributed 23 per cent of the total active cases. The test positivity rate in Maharashtra is over 15 per cent.

West Bengal with 8,868 active cases makes up 3.89 per cent of the national figure while Chhattisgarh accounts for almost 4 per cent with 9,109 active cases.

Government has advised the four states to analyse the surge at the district and sub-district levels to understand the reasons for this rise and plan adequate measures proactively to curb the spread. “Aggressive implementation of the ‘Test-Track-Treat” strategy adopted by the country has been strongly advised by the health secretary now more than ever,” a press statement said.

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