India's latest Covid surge may be down, officials say

NEW DELHI – After weeks of a coronavirus outbreak most likely fueled by the highly transmissible variant of Omicron, Indian health offic...


NEW DELHI – After weeks of a coronavirus outbreak most likely fueled by the highly transmissible variant of Omicron, Indian health officials said the number of cases appeared to be falling, although daily numbers remained high in some parts from the country.

“We see that the pandemic situation has improved,” Dr. VK Paul, who heads India’s Covid task force, told a news conference on Thursday. “There are some states and districts of concern, but overall there is a contraction in the spread of infection, which is encouraging,” he said.

Just weeks earlier, the country had reported more than 340,000 daily cases. By Thursday, that number had fallen to 172,433 cases, the health ministry said. And the percentage of positive test results in the country had dropped by 50%, according to government data.

“It shows that the spread of infection has decreased significantly,” said Lav Agarwal, co-secretary of the health ministry.

Given recent trends, officials recommended some states consider reopening schools and advised people who were waiting at home for elective surgeries to come forward.

Even amid the good news, on Friday the official total number of Covid deaths in India topped 500,000. Experts said that the actual toll is most likely much higher than officially reported partly because deaths are often under-reported.

One of the reasons for the recent spike in reported deaths is that health officials in the southern state of Kerala, which has been announced for its success in tracing and managing the virus, recently reported a backlog of 18,000 deaths in the country’s overall tally.

In another nod to government optimism, officials in Delhi, India, capital, announced on Friday that they would relax some Covid restrictions there. From February 7, schools,Inasmuch as colleges, gyms and spas can reopen with certain restrictions. Offices can reopen at full capacity and a citywide nighttime curfew has been shortened by an hour, the Delhi government has said.



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Newsrust - US Top News: India's latest Covid surge may be down, officials say
India's latest Covid surge may be down, officials say
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