NEW DELHI: Stressing that laxity on part of people in adopting Covid-19 appropriate behaviour has resulted in the rise in coronavirus cases in the country, the Centre has appealed to anyone with symptoms to get tested and seek medical advice when necessary.
This, said officials, is more important as the pandemic has now reached semi-urban and rural areas.
Underlining repeated complaints from states that people are not taking enough precautions to avoid contracting the viral disease, Dr. V K Paul, member (health), Niti Aayog stressed that public health measures such as social distancing and wearing masks remain the mainstay to slow down the pandemic.
India now has 42,80,422 confirmed coronavirus cases of which 8,83,697 are active. On Saturday it overtook Brazil to become the second worst-hit country and on Sunday it reported 40% of the total new cases detected worldwide.
Addressing a press briefing on Covid-19 outbreak management, Paul who also heads Covid-19 national task force, emphasised the importance of testing in containing the pandemic.
"People should not be afraid of getting tested. They should come forward to get themselves tested for Covid-19 if they have symptoms," he said, adding that with experience, the disease can be managed much better for most of the patients now.
Dr. Paul added that the sharp rise in growing tally is a result of increased testing. “Wherever there is doubt, there are tests but at the same time the death rate is decreasing and recovery is increasing. It's true that cases are increasing. but we have to create such an environment that people should not be afraid of testing,” he said.
Dr. Paul added that in many cases even after symptoms, people are not getting tested -- that could be leading to the silent spread of the disease in the communities.
“If you are positive, then you are putting yourself and your family and others in danger. Get tested and face everyone, do not be afraid of testing,” said the official.
Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan maintained India's Covid-19 cases per million population is 3,102, which is among the lowest in the world.
"The Covid-19 deaths per million population in India is 53 as compared to the world average of 115 deaths per million. This is also among the lowest in the world," he said.
Giving a break-up of the cases, Bhushan said five states which account for approximately 70% of total Covid-19 deaths in the country are Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh. The rest 31.37% of deaths are from other states and UTs.
"A total of 28 states and UTs have Covid-19 case fatality rate lower than the national average of 1.70%," the official noted.