China News Service, May 18, reported that on the 17th, 281,000 new cases of new crown were newly diagnosed in India, which is the first time in more than 20 days that there were fewer than 300,000 newly diagnosed cases in a single day.
The decline in new cases seems to bring a glimmer of hope for the epidemic to improve, but WHO experts said that India’s positive rate of testing is as high as 20%, indicating that the severity of the epidemic may still be underestimated.
According to data released by the Ministry of Health of India on the 17th, in the past 24 hours, there were 281,386 new cases of new crowns in India. This is the first time this number has fallen below 300,000 in more than 20 days. The cumulative number of confirmed cases is close to 25 million.
In addition, more than 4,100 people died of the epidemic that day, with a total of 274,000 deaths.
The Associated Press reported that the number of new cases in Mumbai dropped by nearly 70% last week.
Mumbai has a population of 22 million. After reaching a peak of 11,000 new cases per day, the city now has fewer than 2,000 new cases per day.
In addition, New Delhi, the Indian capital, seems to be showing signs of improvement.
However, it seems too early to say that the situation has improved, because Mumbai and New Delhi only represent parts of India.
May 6, 2021 local time, New Delhi, India, a patient with new coronary pneumonia in the ICU ward of the Holy Family Hospital.
Image source: Visual China
In an interview with Indian media, Indian World Health Organization chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said that there are still many areas in India that have not yet reached their peak.
She pointed out that the positive rate of the new coronavirus test in India is as high as about 20%, which means that the situation may be worse.
Swaminathan said, "When we see a high positive rate, it is clear that our testing volume is not enough." The absolute number does not mean anything, and must be considered in the context of the testing volume and the positive rate.
India’s testing capabilities have always been worrying. From cities to towns to rural areas, testing has been difficult to keep up.
The Associated Press quoted Bhramar Mukherjee, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Michigan, that India more than tripled cases last month and reported a 6-fold increase in deaths, but the number of tests only increased by 1.6 times.
In addition, the progress of vaccination in India is also worrying.
According to the Washington Post, in the past six weeks, the number of daily vaccination in India has dropped by about half, from 4.2 million on April 2 to 2 million in early May.
Faced with a surge in new crown cases, India has decided in March to restrict the export of new crown vaccines and began importing Russian satellite V vaccine to alleviate the shortage of vaccines. The government has previously admitted that India’s vaccine shortage will last at least until July. Previous data stated that so far, only about 10% of Indians have received at least one dose of the new crown vaccine.