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Data Suggests Silent Super Spreader Cause of COVID Surge in Mumbai

To keep an eye on asymptomatic cases, which account for 81% of the tally, the BMC has issued new guidelines.

Published
COVID-19
2 min read
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Maharashtra has recorded the highest surge of daily COVID-19 cases in March. In the last one month, apart from the 6.6 lakh new cases registered, there has been a 400 percent rise. Mumbai, too, accounts for the highest number of cases registered. However, according to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), 81 percent of COVID cases are asymptomatic.

BMC Mumbai Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal said in the 49 days till 30 March, 91,000 cases have been reported, out of which 74,000 are asymptomatic. Which means that 17,000 cases need immediate attention and care. However, asymptomatic cases cannot be ignored as they are majorly responsible for the spread.

To keep an eye on asymptomatic cases, the BMC has issued new guidelines. Here’s a look at the isolation and quarantine rules that are being implemented in Mumbai:

  1. Asymptomatic, mildly symptomatic, senior citizens, and patients with comorbid conditions have been asked isolate themselves at home more strictly.
  2. Patients’ consent will be taken on clinical forms to be monitored by health workers during the patients’ home isolation. At the same time, guidelines will also be given through telephones.
  3. Such patients will be given permission for home isolation only if they will be able to maintain social distancing from their family members and have separate toilets.
  4. For the purpose of monitoring the patients’ health every day, links for updating health forms will be sent through IVR calls and SMS.
  5. A quarantine stamp will be mandatory for the patient so that they don’t travel unnecessarily. If they do, they could be charged under the Epidemic Act and be heavily fined.
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How COVID Cases Have Risen Because of the ‘Silent Spreaders’

  • 25 March: 5,504 new cases took the active cases tally to 33,961 in which the growth rate was 0.89 percent and the doubling rate was 75 days.
  • 26 March: 5,513 new cases took the active cases tally to 37,804 in which the growth rate was 0.98 percent and the doubling rate was 68 days.
  • 27 March: 6,123 new cases took the active cases tally to 41,609 in which the growth rate was 1.06 percent and the doubling rate was 63 days.
  • 28 March: 6,932 new cases took the active cases tally to 45,140 in which the growth rate was 1.17 percent and the doubling rate was 58 days.
  • 29 March: 5,888 new cases took the active cases tally to 47,453 in which the growth rate was 1.27 percent and the doubling rate was 53 days.
  • 30 March: 4,758 new cases took the active cases tally to 49,167 in which the growth rate was 1.34 percent and the doubling rate was 50 days.
  • 31 March: 5,394 new cases took the active cases tally to 51,411 in which the growth rate was 1.37 percent and the doubling rate was 49 days.

In the highly populated city of Mumbai, the presence of silent super spreaders is the biggest threat for the administration. However, since the lockdown as an option is the worst-case scenario, attempts to enforce COVID-appropriate behaviour, especially for asymptomatic patients, are underway by the state government.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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