NEW DELHI: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday said 80 districts in the country have not reported any new COVID-19 case in the last seven days, while 47 districts have not registered any fresh case in the last 14 days.
During a review meeting held with the directors and heads of Department of Bio-Technology and its 18 autonomous bodies and PSUs through video conference, Vardhan said over 300 districts have not reported any infection so far, while 129 districts with significant COVID-19 cases have been declared as hotspots. "The government is focusing on these hotspot districts to contain the spread of the virus," he said.
Vardhan, who reviewed the research work conducted by the Department of Bio-Technology (DBT) and its 18 autonomous bodies and PSUs, directed them to expedite the development of antibody detection kits, real-time PCR based detection kits and vaccines for COVID-19 under the 'Make in India' programme.
"No fresh case has been reported in 80 districts over the last 7 days, while 47 districts have not reported any new case in the last 14 days. Also, 39 districts have not reported a case since the last 21 days and 17 districts have not registered any new case for the last 28 days," the minister said.
Vardhan further said that the ICMR has ramped up the testing capabilities significantly, while the DBT is supporting research on vaccine development.
The Union health minister also reviewed the current status of the COVID-19 surveillance in Delhi along LG Anil Baijal, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain, MCD Commissioners, DMs and DCPs of all districts of Delhi, Central/State and District surveillance officers and heads of government hospitals via video-conferencing.
The death toll due to COVID-19 rose to 937 and the number of cases climbed to 29,974 in the country on Tuesday, according to the Union Health Ministry. However, a PTI tally of figures reported by various states and UTs, as of 9:30 PM, showed 30,278 confirmed cases, including 947 deaths and 7,078 recoveries.
There has been a lag in the Union Health Ministry figures, compared to the number of deaths announced by different states, which officials attribute to procedural delays in assigning the cases to individual states.