No community transmission in India yet, COVID-19 recovery rate 49.21 %: Health Ministry


There are more patients who have recovered from COVID-19 in the country than active cases currently, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) said on Thursday while adding that there is no community transmission of the pandemic in India yet.
New Delhi: There are more patients who have recovered from COVID-19 infection in the country than active cases currently, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) said on Thursday while adding that there is ''no community transmission of the pandemic in India yet.''
Lav Agrawal, Joint Secretary, MoHFW also said that the recovery rate in the country currently stands at 49.21 percent during a press conference, which he said is a ''good sign.'' "Today, our recovery rate is 49.21 per cent. The number of patients recovered presently exceeds the number of active patients," Agarwal said. 
As of Thursday, there are 1,37,448 active cases while 1,41,028 patients have been cured and discharged in the country. Meanwhile, 8,102 deaths have also been reported due to the infection so far.
Meanwhile, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director-General, Balram Bhargava, said that there is no community transmission of COVID-19 at the national level yet. He added that the lockdown measures have helped in controlling the spread of the deadly virus until now.
"There is a heightened debate on community transmission. WHO has not given a definition on it. India is such a large country and the prevalence is so low. The prevalence is less than one per cent in small districts. It is slightly higher in the urban areas. In the containment areas, it may be slightly higher. But, we are definite that India is not in community transmission," Bhargava said at the daily press briefing.
"I would like to emphasise that it is not in community transmission," he said.
The ICMR chief, however, said they have to continue with the strategy of testing, tracing, tracking and quarantine. He also stressed on the need to continue with the containment measures, saying "we have found success with those measures until now".
It may be noted that India on Thursday recorded the highest single-day spike of 9,996 new infections and 357 fatalities due to COVID-19 infections.
India's first sero-survey on COVID-19 spread has found that lockdown and containment measures were successful in preventing a rapid rise in infections, but a large proportion of the population still remains susceptible, ICMR Director-General said.
The sero-survey has two parts - estimating the fraction of the population that has been infected with SARS-CoV-2 in the general population and estimating the fraction of population that has been infected with the coronavirus in containment zones of hotspot cities, Bhargava said.
The first part has been completed and the second is ongoing, he said, adding that the survey was conducted in May by the ICMR in collaboration with state health departments, the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Bhargava said the study involves surveying a total of 83 districts with 26,400 people enrolling for it and 28,595 households visited. The slides that were shared with the media stated that data from 65 districts has been compiled till now and the data is based on incidence of reported COVID-19 cases as on April 25.
The sero-survey has found that 0.73 per cent of the population in the districts surveyed had evidence of past exposure to SARS-CoV-2 , Bhargava said. "Lockdown and containment (measures) have been successful in keeping it low and preventing rapid spread," he said, citing the survey.
His remarks came on a day India saw the highest single-day spike of 357 fatalities and 9,996 cases, pushing the death toll to 8,102 and the nationwide tally to 2,86,579. 
According to Union Health Ministry data, the country has registered over 9,500 cases for the seventh day in a row, while the figure for casualties crossed the 300-mark for the first time. The number of recoveries are more than the active novel coronavirus cases for the second consecutive day.
The ministry said the number of active cases stands at 1,37,448 till Thursday 8 am, while 1,41,028 people have recovered, and one patient has migrated.


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