Delhi reported 13,785 fresh COVID-19 cases and 35 more fatalities due to the infection on Wednesday while the positivity rate climbed to 23.86 per cent, according to the data shared by the Health Department. Earlier in the day, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said, "The positivity rate in the national capital is not low enough to lift the restrictions imposed to contain the spread of the infection and that the government will monitor the situation for three to four days."
The national capital had logged 11,684 Covid cases and 38 deaths due to the disease on Tuesday, while the positivity rate had declined to 22.47 per cent. The city had reported 12,527 cases and 24 deaths on Monday while the positivity rate was 27.99 per cent.
A total of 57,776 tests were conducted to detect the infection on Tuesday, up from 52,002 on Monday. Of the 57,776 tests, 44,737 were RT-PCR ones while the rest were rapid antigen tests. Monday's figure was higher than the 44,762 tests carried out on Sunday.
Responding to a question about low rate of testing in Delhi, the Health Minister said that no one was being denied a Covid test and the authorities were following the guidelines issued by the Centre. "They said high-risk contacts of Covid patients and those with symptoms should be tested. On Tuesday, they clarified that tests be conducted in some pockets in the community too, which we are doing," he said.
"Delhi had been conducting 50,000 to 60,000 coronavirus tests daily for the last six months," he added. Delhi had logged 28,867 COVID-19 cases last Thursday, the sharpest single-day spike since the beginning of the pandemic. The number then declined to 24,383 on Friday, 20,718 on Saturday, 18,286 on Sunday, 12,527 on Monday, and 11,684 on Tuesday.
The positivity rate stood at 30.6 per cent on Saturday, the highest in the ongoing wave of the pandemic so far. Delhi's previous biggest daily jump of 28,395 coronavirus cases was recorded on April 20 last year. A total of 2,734 Covid patients are admitted to hospitals, including 908 on oxygen support, of whom 147 are on ventilator.
Since last week, the minister has been saying that the hospital admissions have stabilised in the national capital and that the wave has plateaued. "We have prepared 37,000 Covid beds, of which only 15,600 beds have been released. Only 17 per cent of the beds are occupied, which is why we are not releasing more beds," he said. Jain reiterated that the ongoing wave of the pandemic has peaked and is on the decline in Delhi. "We hope that its descent is as sharp as its rise. Let us wait for a few more days," he said.
An analysis of government data has shown that the number of COVID-19 patients admitted to Delhi hospitals in January so far is higher than the number of those discharged. On an average, 395 Covid patients were admitted to hospitals on a daily basis between January 1 and January 17 while 243 patients were discharged daily in the period. A total of 4,134 patients were discharged from the city hospitals in the period as against 6,707 patients who were admitted to these facilities.
The data also shows that the number of admissions was more than double the number of discharges between January 1 and January 7. The number of containment zones stands at 39,489. The case tally has climbed to 17,47,966 in Delhi while the death toll due to the disease has gone up to 25,460.
With PTI Inputs