India’s COVID spike sees slight drop amid WHO strain warning | News on the coronavirus pandemic

Daily cases are increasing by 329,942 and deaths by 3,876, according to the Department of Health, as the WHO says the variant of the virus first found in India is a global problem.

India’s coronavirus crisis has shown little sign of relief despite an average of seven days of new cases now at an all-time high and international health authorities warning that the variant of the virus first found in India is a problem. global concern.

Daily coronavirus cases in India increased by 329,942, while deaths from the disease increased by 3,876, according to data from the Ministry of Health on Tuesday.

The total number of coronavirus infections in India is now 22.99 million, while the total number of deaths has risen to 249,992, although experts believe both figures have been underestimated.

India leads the world in the average daily number of new deaths reported, accounting for one in three deaths reported globally each day, according to a Reuters news agency tally.

The seven-day average of new cases is a record 390,995.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said the variant of the coronavirus first identified in the country last year was classified as a variant of global concern, with some preliminary studies showing it spreads more easily.

“We classify this as a variant of global concern,” Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO COVID-19 technical officer, said in a briefing in Geneva on Monday. “Some available information suggests increased transmissibility.”

Countries around the world have sent oxygen cylinders and other medical equipment to support the crisis in India as many hospitals across the country are struggling with a shortage of life saving equipment.

Family member breaks down during cremation of deceased from COVID-19 at crematorium in New Delhi [Ishant Chauhan/AP]

Eleven people died on Monday evening at a government hospital in Tirupati, a town in southern Andhra Pradesh state, due to a delay in the arrival of an oxygen tanker, said a government official.

“There were oxygen pressure issues due to the low availability. It all happened in the space of five minutes, ”Mr. Harinarayan, the district’s top official, said on Monday evening, adding that SVR Ruia hospital now had sufficient oxygen.

At least 16 faculty members and a number of retired teachers and staff who lived on the campus of Aligarh Muslim University, one of India’s most prestigious institutions, have died coronavirus, the university said in a statement.

Adding to the pressure on medical facilities, the Indian government has asked doctors to look for signs of mucormycosis or ‘black fungus’ in patients with COVID-19, as hospitals report an increase in cases of rare infection but potentially fatal.

The disease, which can cause a darkening or discoloration of the nose, blurred or double vision, chest pain, difficulty breathing and a blood cough, is strongly linked to diabetes, which in turn can be exacerbated by steroids such as dexamethasone, used to treat severe COVID-19 disease.

Doctors nationwide had to warn against the practice of using cow dung in the belief that it would ward off COVID-19, saying there was no scientific evidence for its effectiveness and it risked to spread other diseases.

In the state of Gujarat in western India, some believers have visited cow shelters once a week to cover their bodies with cow dung and urine in the hope that it will strengthen their immunity to the coronavirus or will help them recover from the coronavirus.

“There is no concrete scientific evidence that cow dung or urine works to boost immunity against COVID-19, this is entirely based on belief,” said Dr. JA Jayalal, National President of Indian Medical Association.

India’s second wave has increased calls for a nationwide lockdown and prompted a growing number of states to impose tighter restrictions, hitting businesses and the economy in general.

Apple iPhone 12 production at a Foxconn factory in southern Tamil Nadu has sagged by more than 50 percent because workers infected with COVID-19 had to leave their jobs, two sources told Reuters.

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