Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala reported over 30,000 daily virus cases on Wednesday, after a three-month hiatus, and its Test Positivity Rate (TRP) increased to 19%. On Wednesday, the southern state recorded 31,445 new coronavirus infections, bringing the total to 19,972 with 215 new deaths. Kerala last surpassed the 30,000-case threshold on May 20, when it reported 30,491 cases.
According to a state government release, the TPR surpassed 19% on Wednesday. While the latest surge increased the total number of infections to 38,83,429, the government announced an intensive screening programme to prevent further spread of the virus.
Following the Onam celebrations, medical experts predicted that the TPR would rise above 20% and the number of infections would increase further.
Kerala has been logging more than or close to 20,000 cases almost every day since July 27, after the Bakrid celebrations, when restrictions were relaxed for a few days.
According to the release, up to 20,271 people have been cured of the infection since Tuesday, bringing the total number of recoveries to 36,92,628 and the number of active cases to 1,70,292.
1,65,273 samples were tested in the last 24 hours, and the TPR was found to be 19.03 percent. According to the report, 3,06,19,046 samples have been tested thus far.
Ernakulam had the most cases (4,048 in total), followed by Thrissur (3,865), Kozhikode (3,680), Malappuram (3,502), Palakkad (2,562), Kollam (2,479), Kottayam (2,050), Kannur (1,930) Alappuzha (1,874), Thiruvananthapuram (1,700), Idukki (1,166) Pathanam (962).
According to the release, 123 of the new cases were health workers, 138 were from outside the state, and 29,608 were infected through contact, with the source of the contact unknown in 1,576 cases.
Currently, 4,70,860 people are being watched in various districts. 4,44,278 are in home or institutional quarantine, while 26,582 are in hospitals.
With the increase in COVID-19 cases in the state, state Health Minister Veena George announced an intensive screening/testing programme to determine who is infected with coronavirus as soon as possible and to prevent the pandemic from spreading further.
In a Facebook post, she stated that testing will be prioritised in low-vaccination areas, and that people should volunteer to be tested.
She stated that samples will be collected directly in cluster areas and through camps, and that steps have been taken to ensure that test results are available as soon as possible.
Kerala has adopted the scientific method of testing per million cases per million, so as the number of cases increased, so did the number of inspections, she explained.
All people who have a fever, a cold, or a sore throat, as well as those who have been in contact with COVID positive people, should be tested for the virus, according to the minister.
She also stated that people with respiratory problems and serious illnesses should be examined to ensure they are not infected with COVID-19, even if they have only minor symptoms, because people infected with coronavirus can have severe consequences.
If anyone who has attended a public ceremony or event, such as a wedding or funeral, tests positive for COVID, everyone who was present should be tested, she said.
Meanwhile, the Opposition Congress identified flaws in the state’s virus management system and urged the LDF government to release health data in this regard as soon as possible.
V D Satheesan, the state Assembly’s Leader of the Opposition, claimed that the state’s COVID control system had failed and urged the government to resurrect its existing disease management strategies and methodologies.
Despite the fact that the total number of COVID patients in the state has surpassed 38 lakh, the government continues to withhold health data on the disease. This will prevent evolving strategies to combat the disease’s third wave,” he said at a press conference here.
The lack of data analysis has hampered even research activities in the southern state, according to the leader.
He claims that the state’s contact tracing system is failing to identify the infected, claiming that the ratio in Kerala is only 1:3.5, despite the fact that at least 20 people must be tested if a person is found to be infected.