India Records Highest Spike in Cases over a Week: With No Lockdown in the Horizon

by Montana Fleming

India reported a record spike in the coronavirus cases on Friday with cases rounding at 14,721. Indian Prime Minister shunned the idea of re-imposing a nation lockdown. Yesterday also marks the first day as India surged the 14,000 mark in rising infections. At this time in the ongoing pandemic, India along with Brazil are the only countries in the world who are reporting new cases daily.

The Health Ministry of India confirmed a total of 160,384 active cases on Thursday further quoting 12,237 total deaths in a population of 1.4 billion. However, testing rates in India still remain very low as India conducts no more than 100,000 tests daily with no consistent tests distributed among the states. Hospitals in the biggest cities which have the best health infrastructure such as Mumbai, New Delhi and Pune are already overflowing with many hospitals not accepting new patients on account of having no beds to accommodate them.

India boasts of one doctor per 1,500 citizens which seems to be strained beyond limit at this point in time. In rural area, the ratio gets much worse boasting one doctor among 10,000 people. The WHO’s standard dictates a ratio of one doctor per 1,000 citizens. While many private hospitals refuse to administer any new patients, the elite hospitals in India are charging as high as $950 per day for an intensive care room with an adjoining ventilator.

Despite the Prime Minister’s stance of not initiating a nationwide lockdown again, each state government are free to impose their own. The Southern State of Tamil Nadu which boasts of more than 50,000 cases at the time of writing is preparing to undergo a state lockdown of 12 days starting Monday.

Nationwide schools remains close as international flights are halted. Local restrictions on shopping and traffic control measures remain in containment zones in order to curb the growth of the virus.

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