The city’s active Covid-19 cases have plateaued between 25,000 and 30,000 throughout June and the first week of July, as against the steady rise seen in the active cases in April and May.
For the past one month, while fresh Covid-19 cases in a single day averaged between 1,000 and 1,300, the active cases have not shown a drastic increase owing to the high discharge rate of patients, who have recovered from the virus.
On Saturday, Mumbai had 24,524 active Covid-19 cases, while on July 1 the number stood at 29,288. On June 15, the active cases count was 26,828, and on June 1, it was 22,571. The average growth rate of Covid-19 cases in Mumbai is 1.63%.
According to BMC, 66% of Covid-19 patients have recovered and discharged as per the protocols outlined by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
Officials from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) as well as experts anticipate that Mumbai’s curve will flatten in mid-July, and total number of active cases will begin to decrease every day after that.
In mid-June, the number of discharged patients in Mumbai had crossed the number of active cases. Experts have also pointed out that a steady number of active cases will stabilise the health care system and help predict future health interventions and policies better.
Civic commissioner IS Chahal pointed out to HT on Sunday that independent studies by doctors in the city have also indicated that Mumbai’s Covid-19 curve will begin to flatten by mid-July. However, officials have also cautioned that scaled testing, monsoon and further easing of restrictions are likely to affect these determinations.
Suresh Kakani, additional municipal commissioner in-charge of the health department, said, “The numbers have given us a clear understanding of where we stand right now. Things are certainly under control. We are on the proper track and our policies are working.”
However, he has cautioned against two factors. “It is not time to celebrate yet . We are not aware of two scenarios: the first being what happens after we open up completely and the traffic on the road starts to increase. This may or may not lead to a spike in cases. The second scenario is the monsoon season. In June, it did not rain much but this month it has started to rain heavily. That is a worrying factor for us, as can aggravate the situation if there are high cases of malaria and dengue. These are situations out of our control, and so we are continuing to upgrade our facility to accommodate a spike. The corporation is preparing for future health interventions without considering that the curve is flattening.”
As on Sunday, Mumbai reported 23,732 active Covid-19 cases, which is 28% of the total cases reported in the city so far. Mumbai recorded 1,287 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday and 69 deaths. The total cases in Mumbai are now at 84,524, while the death toll is 4,899, with 5.7% fatality rate. Mumbai’s figures contribute to 40% of Maharashtra’s total cases, 27% of the state’s active cases and 55% of its deaths.
Dr Gautam Bhansali, consultant physician from Bombay Hospital and chief co-ordinator for private hospitals and BMC, said, “Mumbai’s recovery and doubling rates have improved. The number of cases per day is almost the same – around 1,000 a day but not above 1,300 – from the past three weeks. These are signs that the curve is flattening. I feel that after July 15, our curve will witness a downward trend. But we have to still prepare for the worst-case situation.”
When the number of cases can be predicted based on recent trends, healthcare facilities are in a better position to manage patients and can plan future heath care policies better, according to Dr Bhansali. He said, “Bed availability has improved. Very soon patients will also be able to get their choice of hospital. These are signs that we are doing better.”
BMC has also started antigen testing that will increase Mumbai’s testing capacity to 7,000 tests everyday.
Kakani said, “If someone tests positive in an antigen test, it will be treated at par with RT-PCR [reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction] test’s results. If anyone is tested negative, the person will go through a mandatory RT-PCR test.”