Stating that the decline in positive cases has slowed down in India, the Union Health Ministry on Friday cautioned that the next 100 to 125 days are critical in the fight against COVID-19.
“Fall in cases has slowed down. It’s a warning signal. Next 100 to 125 days are critical for fight against COVID in India,” Dr VK Paul, Member-Health, Niti Aayog said in Health Ministry’s weekly press conference.
Dr Paul also shared a study conducted by the ICMR that analyses the vaccine effectiveness in the high-risk category of police personnel. The study shows that two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were successful in preventing 95% of deaths in the Second Wave.
“One dose of vaccine was able to reduce the mortality rate by 82 percent. Two doses of vaccine were successful in preventing 95 percent of deaths due to COVID-19 during the second wave,” he said.
Dr Paul said the Health Ministry is moving towards a set target to administer 50 crore doses to its adult population before July. For this, the government has ordered 66 crore doses of Covishield and Covaxin, and additionally, 22 crore doses will go to the private sector, he added.
‘Masks are the new normal’
Paul highlighted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given them a target to prevent the third wave.
Union Health Ministry, Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal said, “Analysis shows a projected decline in the use of face masks as we resume activities. We should incorporate the use of face masks in our lives as a new normal.”
He noted that daily new infections in India continue to show a decline during the second wave. “Average daily new cases declined from 3,87,029 cases between May 5-11 to 40,336 cases between July 14-July 16,” the Joint Secretary said.
On Friday, India recorded 38,949 new COVID-19 cases, which took the infection tally to 3,10,26,829, while the death toll reached 4,12,531 with 542 more fatalities. The active cases have declined to 4,30,422 and comprise 1.39 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate stands at 97.28 per cent. It said that a decrease of 1,619 has been recorded in the number of active cases in a span of 24 hours.