By: Express News Service | Vadodara | Published: June 26, 2020 4:35:42 am
The Covid-19 death toll in Vadodara is at 50, with several deaths since May 7 under audit as per the guidelines. (Representational)
Vadodara’s Covid-19 tally has doubled in 25 days since the opening of the lockdown. The numbers, officials say are much below the estimated figures for June, going up from 1,057 on May 31 to 2,042 on June 25.
Out of the doubled numbers of Covid-19, the district areas have gone up from 38 cases on May 31 to 221 cases on June 25. Of these, close to 72 cases are from Padra taluka alone, where the vegetable market became a hotspot.
In the city limits, North Zone — which includes the clustered old city area as well as the first containment zone of the city of Nagarwada-Saiyedpura — has seen the highest number of cases of 753 on June 25, while East, South and West zone recorded 572, 248 and 130 cases, respectively.
Vadodara has tested an average of 145 samples per day until last week but seen an increase in testing numbers following a policy revision by the state government for testing numbers.
Vadodara is now testing an average of 225 samples a day, of which, close to 90 samples are from the rural areas. Officials say the slow growth rate of the virus is a good sign.
Dr Devesh Patel, VMC Health Officer, says, “We had expected the numbers to double in 12-14 days after the Unlock, as per our calculations. However, it has been slower and it is a good sign. There could be many factors — from people being cautious to perhaps some kind of immunity around. We don’t know yet but the virus spread seems to have slowed down in most cities in the last few days. We are expecting that as the days proceed, at the current rate, the next doubling will be about 25-26 days later.”
Patel agrees that the sampling rate could also be a factor in slower growth. “We have been testing about 240 samples a day for the last few days, which is 50% of the testing capacity we have to serve nine districts of Central Gujarat. Earlier with an average of about 150 samples a day, we were taking up almost 70% of the allotted testing capacity for all central districts. The rate of positive cases is about 20% and it could be a reason for the slow doubling of figures but we are testing to our full capacity,” Patel said.
The Vadodara district administration has distributed pulse oximetres to over 600 village panchayats in the district to monitor oxygen saturation levels in persons showing Covid-19 symptoms after several villages recorded cases.
District Collector Shalini Agarwal said, “The rise in numbers is expected. With over 600 villages, one or two cases in a few villages are not a major concern. However, our health officers and surveillance teams are visiting each village. We have created the Covid committees as per government guidelines at the taluka level as well as the gram panchayat levels…”
Vadodara now has 914 people in quarantine, of whom 14 are in institutional quarantine, as against 1,614 on May 31. The Covid-19 death toll in Vadodara is at 50, with several deaths since May 7 under audit as per the guidelines.
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