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Delhi's Covid-19 Peak Likely to Drop in a Week, Says State Health Minister Satyendar Jain

By: Rupashree Nanda

CNN-News18

Last Updated: November 12, 2020, 13:00 IST

New Delhi

Representative image.

Representative image.

Further, attributing the high number of cases to an increase in testing, Jain said, “Compared to the number of tests during the last peak, when the average was 4400 cases, we are testing three times more."

As Delhi touched a record single-day high of 8,593 COVID-19 cases and 85 fatalities, state Health Minister Satyendar Jain said cases are expected to drop in another week.

“Right now, we are seeing a peak. It is difficult to make an exact prediction, but if you talk in terms of weeks, the average over the past one week has been the highest in three months. We saw an average of 13% positive cases, so definitely, in another week, the cases should start declining,” Jain said during a press conference.

Further, attributing the high number of cases to an increase in testing, Jain said, “Compared to the number of tests during the last peak, when the average was 4400 cases, we are testing three times more. So, there is a difference when you compare it with the last peak. The number of tests has also increased. Yesterday, we conducted 60,000 to 64,000 tests. So, the number of tests has also peaked.”

“In hospitals, 8000 beds are still available. The problem is the availability of ICU beds in private hospitals and for that, the Supreme Court had told the government to approach the double bench of the High Court. The hearing may happen today,” he said.

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The Minister also clarified that for the treatment of COVID-19 patients, ventilators are used in two ways: by fixing it to the face; and by intubation. “Currently, intubation is being avoided and it is clear that there is a need for more ICU beds than ventilator beds,” he said.

“There are two aspects: one is to stop the spread of infections and the other is its treatment. After being infected, about 80 to 90 percent of people are under home quarantine or home isolation and are recovering. About 10 to 15% need to go to hospitals for treatment. If Delhi did not have this model of home isolation, then it would have been impossible to cater to these kinds of numbers. The active cases in Delhi are now more than 30,000. However, those admitted in hospitals are approximately 8,000, including people from outside. The home isolation policy has been successful,” he said, elaborating on the Delhi government’s strategy.

Even as pressure on the Delhi government mounted from Purvanchali community to allow Chhat Puja, Jain supported the ban as it might be “a super spreader”. “Chhat Puja is held alongside water bodies, so permission to conduct it in ‘ghats’ has been forbidden. When 100 people descend on a water body like a pond or a tank and get infected, there is a chance that the rest would also get the disease. So, it has been banned. People can still observe them in their houses,” he said.

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first published:November 12, 2020, 13:00 IST
last updated:November 12, 2020, 13:00 IST