Maharashtra health department has warned of a spike in the number of coronavirus cases in the state, especially during winters and the festive season. The department has informed new variants like BA.2.3.20 and BQ.1 have been reported from the state.
These variants have been detected for the first time in the country, it said. It also said that the new XBB variant of coronavirus has a growth advantage over BA.2.75 and has immune evasive properties.
A health bulletin on Monday said the COVID-19 cases rose by 17.7 per cent in the state between October 10 and 16, as compared to between October 3 and 9. This rise has been noticed particularly in the densely populated districts of Thane, Raigad and Mumbai, it said.
“Some experts are predicting a rise in the coming winter season, especially in the festive environment. In WGS (whole genome sequencing), the proportion of BA.2.75 has decreased to 76 per cent from 95 per cent,” the bulletin said.
“The state has reported XBB which is a new variant having growth advantage over BA.2.75 and immune evasive property. Apart from this, the state has reported BA.2.3.20 and BQ.1 variant first time in India,” it said. The health department asked people not to ignore flu-like symptoms, to seek medical advice at the earliest and observe COVID-19-appropriate behaviour in public places. It has also urged people to get vaccinated.
“People with comorbidities need to take extra precautions while visiting public places. Persons suffering from an influenza-like illness should avoid public contact as much as possible,” the health bulletin said.
COVID-19 cases in Mumbai, Thane
Mumbai on Monday recorded 96 new cases of coronavirus that raised the tally of infections to 11,52,576, an official from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said. The toll remained unchanged at 19,738, while the count of recoveries reached 11,31,715 after 111 people recovered from the infection in the last 24 hours, he said.
With this, the city is now left with 1,123 active cases, the official said. As per a bulletin issued by the civic body, of the latest cases, 11 patients were hospitalised during the day, taking the total number of hospitalisations to 76 in the metropolis.
At least 3,048 swab samples were tested in the past 24 hours, increasing the total number of tests conducted to 1,83,97,311, it said. The city’s recovery rate stands at 98.2 per cent, while the overall growth rate is at 0.014 per cent and the doubling rate is at 4,860 days.
Meanwhile in Thane, as many as 43 new cases of coronavirus were detected, taking its tally of infections to 7,45,998, a health official said on Tuesday. These new cases were reported on Monday, he said.
There are currently 510 active COVID-19 cases in Thane, which comes under the Mumbai Metropolitan Region, he said.