India on Friday saw a record number of fatalities due to the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in a single day, adding 300 deaths that took the country’s toll from the viral illness to 6,575.
However, India’s case fatality rate (CFR) – defined as the proportion of deaths to the total number of cases – continued to remain steady at 2.8%, much lower than the global mortality rate of 5.8%, even as the number of cases has continued too see an upward trend.
At an average, the country has reported 239 daily new deaths in the last seven days, 33% higher than the average of 179 of the week before that.
The country is also inching towards adding 10,000 daily new cases, reporting more than 9,000 cases for the third consecutive day; it was 9,398 on Friday, 9,962 on Thursday and 9,565 on Wednesday. On Friday, India’s total tally was 236,037.
Experts say India has slowed the spread of infections with an early decision to enforce strict lockdowns, first imposed on March 25, but the number of infections is likely to continue rising as the government eases restrictions to help spur an ailing economy. The country is likely to hit the peak of infections sometime in June-July, before the curve of daily new cases begins to fall.
The key, they say, is to control the case fatality rate, which will determine if the health infrastructure in the country is capable of withstanding the outbreak that has ravaged nations around the world.
Some of the worst-hit countries and the current epicentres of the pandemic such as the US and Brazil have a mortality rate of 5.7% and 5.5%.