Mumbai was the first city to witness a massive daily surge as the current wave of Covid-19 infections hit India, possibly fuelled by the Omicron variant. However, three weeks into the rise, India’s financial hub is showing a downward trend if the numbers in the past few days are anything to go by.
While it may be too early to turn optimistic, some medical experts have hinted at the ebbing of the third wave with Mumbai recording a decline in daily Covid-19 cases for the fourth consecutive day on January 11. Today’s figures are yet to come in.
The city’s Covid tally on January 11 stood at 11,647 as against 13,648 on January 10, 19,474 on January 9, 20,318 on January 8 and 20,971 on January 7.
Not only have the number of daily cases reported a decline but the test positivity rate, too, declined. The rate indicates the percentage of people who test positive for the virus of those overall who have been tested.
Going by the test positivity rate’s reversal trend, the number has now fallen for five days in a row – the figure was 29.9% on January 6, 29% on January 7, 28.6% on January 8, 28.5% on January 9, 23% on January 10, and touched 18.8% on January 11.
After the outbreak of the pandemic in March 2020, Mumbai reported its highest-ever cases on January 7 at 20,971 positive cases. Since then the number of daily infections have been declining.
While the downward trend in the number of daily cases makes for an optimistic trend, there has been a drop in the number of tests undertaken.
Mumbai conducted 62,097 tests in the last 24 hours, which is lower than the tests conducted a few days ago. Reports also look at the reflection of the “weekend effect” as fewer tests were done over the weekend, considering diagnostic results are collected a day later.
Then, there are also reports which claim that since convenient home covid-19 testing over the reliable RT-PCR tests has increased in Mumbai, thousands of cases may even be missing or unreported, considering people do not disclose the results to health authorities.
Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani, in a media interview, said that even though the number of daily cases in the city have started to decrease, it is too soon to reach any comprehensive conclusion and that it is important to monitor the situation in the upcoming days.
Meanwhile, Dr Shashank Joshi, member of the state Covid-19 task force, has claimed that the third wave has started flattening in Mumbai. “The number of tests has not dropped drastically, but the positivity rate has. The overall trend thus is a flattening of the curve,” said Joshi.
Joshi points at reasons for the decline of cases in the city. He says that there is a section of people who prefer staying at home and isolating rather than getting tested. He says that we still don’t know if accurate numbers are being reported.
“The true yardstick of this tsunami-like third wave is going to be the people who are getting admitted to the hospitals due to Covid-19, not with Covid-19 – there is a difference between the two,” he added.
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