PATNA The third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, in the initial fortnight, has predominantly affected the urban areas in Bihar, with Patna reporting 38.5% (13,927) of the state’s 34,084 total active cases, said state health officials here on Friday.

Patna also registered the state’s highest 32% (2,116 cases) of the total 6,541 new infections on Thursday, having the state’s highest positivity rate of 21.03% in the week ending January 13, said Pratyaya Amrit, Bihar’s additional chief secretary, health, during a virtual press conference on Friday.

Saharsa had a test positivity rate of 4.80%, followed by Muzaffarpur 4.73% and Jehanabad 4.23%, he said.

Muzaffarpur (427 cases) and Gaya (132) were among the other two leading urban districts in terms of the high number of active Covid-19 cases, followed by Saharsa and Munger, which were relatively less urban.

“Urban centres like Patna are showing higher transmissibility of the virus than rural areas in Bihar, just like Mumbai in Maharashtra,” said Amrit.

“The number of daily new infections has been going up and down in Patna. It reported 2,566 cases on January 10, 2,200 on January 11, 2,017 on January 12, 2,275 on January 13 and 2,116 cases on January 14. It is actually early to predict the trend of the virus. We are, however, keeping a close watch on the trend,” he said.

“Only 1% of the active cases have required hospitalisation, while the remaining 99% are under home isolation. This is a pointer to the fact that the effect of the virus has been mild so far. While there is need to be extremely cautious and follow Covid appropriate behavior, there is nothing to fear at this stage,” said Amrit.

He said the home isolation tracking (HIT) application for monitoring Covid-19 patients has been made functional again.

Explaining the functioning of the HIT app, executive director of the State Health Society, Bihar (SHSB), Sanjay Kumar Singh, said: “The app, which has been installed on the tablets of auxiliary nursing midwives (ANM) and accredited social health activists (ASHA) who will visit people under home isolation, fetches data directly from the Covid-19 portal. The health worker concerned then visits the patient to check for temperature and oxygen saturation level, the readings of which are fed into the app. In case of deterioration in these parameters, an alarm is triggered and the patient is taken to hospital,” said Sanjay Kumar

Talking about vaccination against Covid-19, Singh said 99% of the target population of 6.18 crore in the state had taken the first dose while 90% of those eligible for second dose had taken the shots.


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