COVID-19: Spiralling test positivity rate in Thiruvananthapuram signals increase in cases in coming days

The infection rate in the district was well controlled in the past one month until the Onam eve.

Published: 30th August 2021 02:51 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th August 2021 02:51 AM   |  A+A-

Covid testing, coronavirus

A medic collects swab sample from a person. (Photo | Ashishkrishna HP, EPS)

Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: After the tough protocol measures yielded results in the capital district that saw the test positivity rate flickering between 5 and 10 per cent for around seven weeks, things started going out of control with Onam relaxations. For the first time since July 1, the TPR crossed 10 on Thiruvonam day raising apprehensions.  

The infection rate in the district was well controlled in the past one month until the Onam eve. Thanks to the celebrations and shopping frenzy, the highest TPR was reported on Sunday, 15.8 per cent. The TPR has come down to as low as 6.5 per cent on July 12. 

According to the district medical team, the TPR is likely to increase in the coming days and the district may come to the top spot in the highest number of infections in the state. As hospitalisation cases are on the rise, the medical team fear the hospital beds and ICUs may get exhausted soon.Sources said the people are not serious about the infection spread and they are now on a carefree mode. The health department also warned the public not to gather anywhere and to strictly adhere to Covid protocol. 

The district administration is prepared to control the spread by implementing various containment measures, including imposing restrictions based on WIPR (Weekly Infection Population Ratio).The vaccination drive will be intensified and the district administration will soon begin an awareness campaign for those who are not interested in taking the shots. 

Dr K S Shinu, district medical officer, told TNIE that the medical team is prepared to prevent the spread. “Going by the trend, the infection rate may go higher. The relaxations given during Onam have already been reflected in the daily tally of Covid cases. Even now, people are least bothered about the infection and many of them are not following social distancing norms. On our part, we are doing our best to control the infection rate. We expect the people to cooperate too, “ he said. 

On Saturday, the state government decided to impose a lockdown in areas which have WIPR greater than 7. According to Vineeth T K, deputy collector, the district administration has already begun to impose restrictions, including lockdown and declaring containment and micro-containment zones on a daily basis. 

“Earlier, the weekly restrictions started on Thursday. However, as per the new decision, the restrictions will be imposed from Monday.  There will be a lockdown at places where the WIPR is greater than 7.It will be enforced at ward level in corporation and municipalities and complete lockdown will be declared in a panchayat fully if it has WIPR greater than 7. The vaccination rate will also be increased as we have sufficient vaccines. However, we will also create an awareness campaign in the district as many people are still reluctant to take vaccines, “ he said.


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