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New Delhi, April 5, 2020
India today reported eight more deaths due to coronavirus (COVID-19), raising the toll to 77, and 505 new cases of infection in the past 24 hours, which took the total number to 3,577 so far.
Of the eight new deaths, three were reported from Madhya Pradesh and one each from Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, figures released by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare this evening said.
This is the second consecutive day that the increase in new cases has been more than 500. Yesterday, the number had gone up by 525.
Of the total of 83 deaths so far, Maharashtra accounted for the highest number at 24, followed by 11 in Gujarat, nine in Madhya Pradesh, seven each in Delhi and Telangana, five in Punjab, four in Karnataka, three each in Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, two each in Jammu & Kashmir, Kerala and Uttar Pradesh, and one each in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.
The total number of 3,577 cases includes the 83 deaths and 275 patients who have been cured, which meant there were 3,219 active cases of the virus in the country as of this evening.
Of the total 3,577 cases, Delhi accounted for the highest at 503 -- the first state to cross the 500-mark, followed by 490 in Maharashtra, 485 in Tamil Nadu, 306 in Kerala, 269 in Telangana, 227 in Uttar Pradesh, 200 in Rajasthan, 190 in Andhra Pradesh, 165 in Madhya Pradesh, 144 in Karnataka, 122 in Gujarat, 106 in Jammu & Kashmir, 80 in West Bengal, 59 in Haryana, 57 in Punjab, 30 in Bihar, 26 in Assam, 22 in Uttarakhand, 20 in Odisha, 18 in Chandigarh, 14 in Ladakh, 10 in Andaman & Nicobar Islands, nine in Chhattisgarh, seven in Goa, six in Himachal Pradesh, five in Puducherry, three in Jharkhand, two in Manipur and one each in Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram.
According to the Ministry of Health, as many as 274 districts in the country have reported COVID-19 cases so far.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a Joint Meeting of the Empowered Groups yesterday to ensure planning, preparedness and implementation of the COVID-19 response across the country. The groups apprised the meeting of the actions taken so far to increase the availability of hospitals, isolation and quarantine facilities, testing and critical care training, and so on.
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan visited the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Jhajjar, near here in Haryana, to take stock of its preparedness to handle COVID-19 cases. He stated that the AIIMS Jhajjar will function as dedicated COVID-19 hospital consisting of isolation wards with 300 beds, which would ensure prompt care for patients in isolation requiring advanced medical support.
Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba interacted with Chief Secretaries and Health Secretaries of all the States and Union Territories (UTs), and the district magistrates (DMs), police chiefs, chief medical officers and other officials of all districts through a video conference today. He directed all DMs to ensure that the pharma units manufacturing medicines and medical equipment are smoothly run.
All staff and concerned representatives from States/UTs were given an orientation regarding the containment strategy in the video conference today. All districts have further been advised to make a COVID-19 crisis management plan. The District Commissioners and Municipal Commissioners from six districts (Bhilwara, Agra, Gautam Buddh Nagar, Pathanamthitta, East Delhi and Mumbai Municipal) shared their strategies and experience.
An advisory has been issued by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) regarding rapid antibody based blood tests for COVID-19, in clusters (with containment zones), and in large migration gatherings/evacuee centres. As per the advisory, facilities will ensure that the reporting of the test is fed directly to the ICMR portal. This will expedite the process of contact tracing and timely treatment.
Also according to a recent advisory issued by ICMR, spitting in public places can increase the spread of COVID-19 virus. In view of the increasing danger of the COVID-19 pandemic, people are urged to refrain from consuming smokeless tobacco products and spitting in public places.