Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala recorded 14,087 COVID-19 cases on Saturday, pushing the total cases reported from the state to 30,53,116.
As many as 11,867 people were cured of the infection, taking the total recoveries to 29,22,921.
The active cases touched 1,15,226, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said during his customary sunset briefing. The caseload remained above 1-lakh for the past 10 days.
In the last 24 hours, 1,31,682 samples were tested and the test positivity rate was 10.7 per cent. The average test positivity rate of the past seven days is 10.4%. The TPR in last three days is 10.6 per cent.
With 109 deaths being reported on Saturday, the state's death toll has risen to 14,489.
Of the positive cases, 53 were health workers, while 98 had come from outside the state and 13,240 infected through contact. The source of infection of 696 among them is unknown.
Though the chief minister mentioned concern over test positivity rate, he said there is no need to panic. Explaining the situation, he said the second wave of the pandemic was started hitting the state only in May, whereas in other state the rise in COVID cases started in March.
TPR rose upto 29% and daily cases breached 40,000-mark within a few days. Deaths also peaked during the time. However, government was able to provide all necessary attention to COVID patients in hospitals across the state, he said.
70% of the hospital beds were in use during the second wave. The government was able to provide treatment to 90% of total patients in state-owned hospitals and care centres. The government also extended financial help to those needed during the time. No other state has been able to do such initiatives, the chief minister said.
The government is successful in handling the pandemic with the cooperation of private hospitals.
Key points from the CM's press meet:
• It's impossible to extend lockdown indefinitely. This is why government is easing restrictions in phases. However, some people are found to be misusing the relaxations.
• Kerala reported the number of Covid deaths better than many other states and the ICMR had appreciated the state's efforts.
• Kerala's aim had been to gain herd immunity by vaccinating as many people as possible.
• Vaccinated people must continue to wear mask to avoid breakthrough infection and passing on the disease to others.
• New counters will be opened at Bevco outlets to avoid crowding in front of liquor stores. Plans to open prepaid counters are also in the offing.
• Government has decided to allow pilgrims to visit Sabarimala Temple for Karkidaka pooja from July 17 till 21. Pilgrims will have to take prior permission through virtual queue system. They will have to produce certificate of vaccination (both doses) or RT-PCR negative certificate obtained in 48 hours prior to visit to the temple for getting the permission. Up to 5,000 people will be allowed to visit Sabarimala Temple in five days.
• The guidelines for vaccinating pregnant women will be published soon.
• Speaking of Zika virus infections reported in the state, the chief minister said the situation is under control. He urged people to take preventive measures to tackle the menace of mosquitoes.
• Zika virus spreads mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, which bites during the day. Aedes mosquitoes are the same that transmit dengue, chikungunya and yellow fever. On Thursday, 12 of the 19 samples sent to the National Institute of Virology in Pune from Thiruvananthapuram had tested positive for Zika.
• Observe weekends, when complete lockdown are effective across the state, as dry days. On these days, people are asked to clean the surroundings of their houses.
• Efforts are on to bring Sputnik vaccine and other imported COVID-19 vaccines in the state.
District-wise breakup of today's positive cases:
Malappuram - 1,883 (contact cases - 1829)
Thrissur - 1,705 (1694)
Kozhikode - 1,540 (1518)
Ernakulam - 1,465 (1342)
Kollam - 1,347 (1342)
Palakkad - 1,207 (761)
Thiruvananthapuram - 949 (875)
Alappuzha - 853 (834)
Kannur - 765 (680)
Kasaragod - 691 (667)
Kottayam - 682 (650)
Pathanamthitta - 357 (349)
Wayanad - 330 (319)
Idukki - 313 (290)
District-wise breakup of recoveries:
Ernakulam - 1,381
Malappuram - 1,307
Thrissur - 1,254
Kozhikode - 1,192
Palakkad - 1,064
Kollam - 1,015
Thiruvananthapuram - 1,012
Alappuzha - 717
Kannur - 685
Kottayam - 680
Kasaragod - 646
Pathanamthitta - 443
Wayanad - 249
Idukki - 222