India Fight Against Coronavirus: Observation from 22nd June 2020 Data

A few observations from 22nd June 2020 (National Data) on coronavirus pandemic:-

1. COVID19 new case count decreased by more than 10% to 13,548 on 22nd June 2020 with 7-days and 14-days averages of 13,911 and 12,466 respectively. A conclusive change in the reversal of the trend before the 3rd week of July 2020 looks distant. The coronavirus has reached the unaffected rural districts but the numbers of positive are active cases in these rural districts are falling sharply. In specific areas of Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai, community transmission is an unfortunate reality now. States can control the spread with strict lockdown in the hotspots irrespective of the economic costs to stop the community transmission and break the chain. Daily count has reached its peak in India at 15,000. Daily count will hover around 15,000 with 10% of upward/downward correction for around one month before it conclusively starts falling in the third week of July.

2. Daily growth rate of the active cases decreased to 1.34% with a 7 days growth rate to 2.23% on 22nd June 2020. 7-days growth must keep on falling to flatten the swelling corona curve to enable the healthcare system to respond better to the pandemic.

3. The doubling period of active cases has decreased to 31.5 days on 22nd June 2020 with 7-days growth rate of 2.23%. However the increasing daily positivity rate is eroding all the gains.

4. Doubling period of the confirmed cases was 19.2 days with a growth rate of 3.6% on 22nd June 2020. The incremental decline in the growth rate continues increasing the doubling period for long. A sharp decline in the growth rate will help flattening the corona curve.

5. The gap between the confirmed and active cases per million is widening everyday and has doubled to finally ease the increasing pressure on the very limited healthcare infrastructure and services in India. The daily testing capacity in India has increased from an average of less than 5,000 to an average of more than 1,80,000 tests in the last two months.

6. The overall positivity rate increased to 6.17% with a daily positivity at 7.2% on 22nd June 2020. India needs to undo the community transmission and bring down the daily positivity rates in the few urban centres vis.a.vis Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai. Testing and tracing alone wouldn't be enough. When India is unlocking, it needs to strictly follow the social distancing norms to break the chain but it doesn't seem to be a practice.

7. The overall recovery rate slightly increased to 55.3% on 22nd June 2020 with an increased daily recovery rate. This incremental increase in the overall recovery rate should continue. Corona patients are recovering in an average period of 14-17 days. Considering the increasing number of patients and a possible community transmission, resuming economic activities to pre-COVID period would be a long drawn battle now and will take months before coming to a conclusion.

8. Active vs recovered vs death as on 22nd June 2020. With every passing day, the proportion of recovered cases is increasing and the proportion of death and active cases are falling. The corona curve is moving in the same direction.

9. The overall case fatality rate has slightly decreased by 6 basis points to 3.18% on 22nd June 2020. Case fatality rate is expected to fall below the 3% mark.

10. The daily death count remains below the 7-days average. However media outlets are reporting that the patients are either not being treated or admitted in the hospitals. This will increase case fatality rate. India must save human lives to compensate for the economic cost.

11. The numbers of patients in India are increasing but India is still doing better than most of the countries in the world on account of death per million with an average of 10.38 against the world average of 62.48. The coronavirus outbreak is in the growth phase in India as it happened very late in comparison to the rest of the world. When the world economy will start accelerating economic activities, India still will be struggling to contain the contagion.

Rajeev Upadhyay

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