The present wave of the Covid-19 pandemic largely affected Ghaziabad residents in the 21-50 age group, who comprised about 66.96% of the total number of cases between December 2021, and January this year, according to district officials.
Officials did say that the positivity rate declined during the past two days with an increase in testing, but attributed it more to the pendency of reports which were yet to arrive from several labs.
Positivity rate refers to the percentage of people who test positive for the virus compared to all those who have been tested for it.
Health department records indicate that the district recorded about 10,118 cases from December 2021, to January 13 this year. Of these cases, there were 6,775 patients in the 21-50 age group, comprising 66.96% of the total.
Meanwhile, officials said children in the 0-10 age group were also affected during the ongoing wave, and 369 of them tested positive, comprising 3.65% of the cases between December 2021, and January this year. Likewise, 702 senior citizens were also infected this time, comprising 6.94% of the total cases since December 2021.
“A majority of positive cases were reported by the 21-50 age group as it is the set of people who regularly move out for work and other jobs. The trend is continuing. During the initial days, people who travelled to different states or returned from foreign countries were testing positive, but this trend is not observed nowadays as the infection has now spread,” said Dr Bhavtosh Shankhdhar, chief medical officer.
Within the 21-50 age group, the segment of people in the 31-40 age group has the highest share in present cases. According to data from the district health department, of the 10,118 cases, this age group accounts for 2,623 cases with a share of 25.92%, while the second-highest affected age group is 21-30 as 2,379 of them have been infected so far (a share of 23.51%).
Of the 10,118 patients, 6,053 were men and 4,065 were women.
“Despite the infection spreading fast, the severity is very low. This is due to the high rate of seroprevalence and vaccination. So, it is vital that people get vaccinated. Those who have not taken any of the doses are at risk,” said Dr Ashish Aggarwal, former president of the Indian Medical Association (Ghaziabad chapter).
Officials said that of the infected patients, they estimate that about 99% have taken either one or two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.
“This has prevented deterioration of their health to a large extent. Our focus is on increasing vaccination for children and also for other age groups. We estimate that the rate of infection has not come down as indicated by lower positivity in the past two days. We are waiting for test reports from different labs and this may increase the number of cases when uploaded. We will observe the declining trend for about a fortnight before we can safely say that cases are on the decline,” the CMO added.
The Ghaziabad district on Thursday recorded 1,680 cases out of the 11,022 samples tested–with a positivity rate of 15.24%. This is the highest daily testing figure in December 2021, or January so far.
The positivity rate of the cases showed a decline on Wednesday too when the district reported 1,581 cases out of 9,335 samples tested. The positivity rate was 16.94%–lower than the highest positivity of 18.72% recorded on January 11.
Starting January 5, the district is conducting more than the daily target of 7,400 tests, with the daily testing peaked to 11,022 tests on Thursday.
According to official records, the district reported 65,403 cases overall since the start of pandemic and has 9,036 active cases at present.