India's Covid-19 deaths among lowest in the world

The WHO Situation Report 154 dated June 22, 2020 shows India as having one of the lowest deaths per lakh population. India’s cases of death per lakh population is 1.00 while the global average stands at 6.04.

The Covid-19 pandemic is fast spreading in rural India apart from the metros and urban areas, but the country’s death tally due to the coronavirus infection is among the lowest in the world per one lakh population, according to a WHO report.

The WHO Situation Report 154 dated June 22, 2020 shows India as having one of the lowest deaths per lakh population. India’s cases of death per lakh population is 1.00 while the global average stands at 6.04. The UK has witnessed 63.13 cases of COVID-19-related deaths per lakh population, while the metric for Spain, Italy and the United States is 60.60, 57.19 and 36.30 respectively.

The Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry in a release on Tuesday claimed that “early detection of cases, timely testing and surveillance, extensive contact tracing coupled with effective clinical management” have helped to check not only the case mortality but also helped prevention, containment and management of COVID-19 in all parts of the country.

However, the story may be different going by the reports that are going viral in the Northeast India. Only recently, the news of protesting returnees assaulting a doctor in far West district of Manipur, Tamenglong, for delayed test result went viral. On Monday, returnees in quarantine centres of Ukhrul district, having waited 27 days in quarantine for their sample test results which is yet to arrive, issued an ultimatum demand to the government to address their grievances. There were also reports of returnees leaving quarantine centres without getting their test results. The stories are many. As thousands of people from the Northeast India stranded in various parts of the country returned to their respective home states, the region turned from green to red and the numbers of positive cases are spiraling.

However, the ministry stated that India’s recovery rate continues to improve. As on date, it is 56.38 per cent amongst COVID-19 patients. So far, a total of 2,48,189 patients have been cured of COVID-19, it stated.

At present, the country has 1,78,014 active cases and all are under active medical supervision, the ministry stated. It also stated that the number of government labs has been increased to 726 and private labs have increased to 266, summing up to a total of 992. The break-up is as follows:

1. Real-Time RT PCR based testing labs: 553 (Govt: 357 + Private: 196)

2. TrueNat based testing labs : 361 (Govt: 341 + Private: 20)

3. CBNAAT based testing labs : 78 (Govt: 28 + Private: 50)

The total number tested, as on date, is 71,37,716, the ministry added.

First Published:June 23, 2020, 3:22 p.m.