14 states report less than 5,000 Covid-19 cases: Health ministry

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At least 14 states in the country currently have less than 5,000 active coronavirus disease (Covid-19) cases each, highlighting the need to focus on states with a high case load to cut the transmission cycle of the viral infection, according to government officials.

They are Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Chandigarh, Puducherry, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Ladakh, Sikkim, Mizoram, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Lakshadweep.

Ten states and Union Territories contribute 78% of the total recovered cases, with Maharashtra leading the tally with over 1,000,000 recoveries, followed by Andhra Pradesh with at least 600,000.

Wednesday saw 86,764 new Covid-19 cases in the country, taking the total number of cases to 6,310,241. With 1,179 new deaths reported on Wednesday, the number of people having succumbed to the disease in the country so far since March 12, when the first death due to Covid-19 was reported from the south, is 83,722.

At least 36% of the new fatalities reported are from Maharashtra—on Wednesday, the state reported 430 deaths.

Apart from Maharashtra, other states that have reported a higher number of deaths are Karnataka, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.

Experts in epidemiology, however, said that the possibility that states with a high case load are actually efficient in their Covid-19 data reporting should not be ruled out.

“It should be seen why some states are reporting fewer cases; is it because they are not testing enough or their reporting mechanism is not up to the mark?” said Dr Giridhara Babu, head, epidemiology division, Indian Institute of Public Health, Public Health Foundation of India.

“Sometimes during an outbreak, data surveillance takes time to pick up at some places. It needs to be monitored though,” he added.

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