India’s ‘R-Value’ is inching up and that should be a matter of concern, Dr Randeep Guleria, head of Delhi’s state-run All India Institute Of Medical Sciences. ‘R-Value’ refers to a measure tracking the number of people infected by any single case of Covid-19.
The country reported 41,831 new Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours and 541 deaths from the disease, giving out updates as the top doctor warned that a measure on how quickly infections may spread is rising worryingly.
“Starting from .96, and going all the way up to 1, the rise in R-Value is a cause of concern. Simply put, this means that the chances of infection spreading from a person, who has Covid, to others have gone up. The areas which are witnessing this surge should bring in restrictions and employ ‘test, track, and treat’ strategy to break the chain of transmission,” said Guleria in an interview to NDTV channel.
With Kerala last week reporting half of new Covid cases in India, there’s a need to evaluate the surge in infections. “In the beginning, Kerala had set a precedent for others by managing the pandemic well. They also had an aggressive vaccination drive. Yet despite that, are witnessing a spike in a way that’s different from other parts of the country. This needs to be evaluated. Also, is there a variant behind the surge? Are containment strategies being aggressively followed – all this needs to be evaluated,” said Guleria.
The health ministry said active cases have increased to 410,952, comprising 1.30 per cent of total infections. Ten states–Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Assam, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Andhra Pradesh and Manipur–are either witnessing a surge in new Covid cases or a rise in positivity rate, which is the number of people testing positive for Covid-19 for all tests conducted.