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Corona cases to reach 1mn in next few days, toll to hit 50,000



World Health Organisation

Geneva, April 2 : In the next few days, the world will see confirmed COVID-19 cases reach one million and death tally climb to 50,000, the chief of World Health Organization (WHO) noted on Wednesday.

“As we enter the fourth month since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I am deeply concerned about the rapid escalation and global spread of infection,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a daily briefing, Xinhua reported.

Noting a near-exponential growth of new COVID-19 cases over the past five weeks around the world, Tedros said the death toll has more than doubled in the past week.

As of Wednesday, the pandemic has killed 40,777 people worldwide, as a total of 827,419 infections were reported by over 200 countries and regions, the WHO situation dashboard indicated.

Outside China, the number of cases surged to 744,781, while 37,456 patients have died as of Wednesday afternoon.

According to WHO, the US has seen 163,199 cases, including 2,850 deaths, while Italy has reported 105,792 cases, among which 12,430 patients lost their lives.

Other than those countries with a vast number of cases, Tedros warned that Africa, Central and South America which had reported relatively fewer confirmed cases so far, could see serious social, economic and political consequences of COVID-19.

He stressed that it is critical to ensure those countries and regions are well equipped to detect, test, isolate and treat cases, as well as identify contacts.

Besides, Tedros called on governments to put in place social welfare measures to ensure vulnerable people have food and other life necessities during the crisis.

“Many developing countries will struggle to implement social welfare programs of this nature,” Tedros said, noting that debt relief is essential to enable those countries to take care of their people and avoid economic collapse.


Covid woes in Delhi’s AIIMS, 479 test positive





New Delhi, June 4 : The All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) here has turned to be a ”hotspot” of coronavirus infection with as many as 479 persons — staff as well as their dependents — testing positive for the highly contagious disease.

A source told IANS that as on May 30, a total of 479 people tested positive. “This includes two faculty members, 17 resident doctors, 38 nursing staff, 74 security staff and hospital attendants each and 54 sanitation staff.” The number also includes 14 labs, x-ray and other technical staff while the number of others (dependents) stood at 193.

However the source also told IANS that the AIIMS has scaled up its testing. “AIIMS has now started testing most patients before admission to wards and before taking to OTs. A new rapid test, called CBNAAT, which gives results in 2 hours is now available at AIIMS. This may help to reduce exposure of healthcare workers in hospitals. Last month and before, very few patients and with symptoms were tested. Many patients tested positive in wards when they were tested in view of symptoms,” said the source.

He also added that the new machine for testing is available for Emergency department too, so that emergency patients can be tested.

“As such it is highly possible that the number is because AIIMS has resources and cares for its employees, and is able to scale up its testing. More the testing, more the diagnosed healthcare workers. Masks and PPE are of good quality but the problem is that they don”t seal properly. So from around the margins of masks, aerosols can enter. There should be a proper sealing test and different sizes of masks should be made available on a person to person basis,” said the source.

On May 25, a senior sanitation supervisor posted at Rajkumari Amrit Kaur OPD in the AIIMS had died from Covid-19. A mess worker of the AIIMS also lost his life due to the disease on May 22.


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Nine in 10 migrants in Delhi consumed less food during lockdown: Survey

Nearly four in 10 (37 per cent) households were unable to get ration and 96 per cent of vulnerable households did not have a Jan Dhan account.




daily wages workers

New Delhi, June 4 : As many as 73 per cent informal and migrant workers lost their jobs in Delhi during the lockdown, according to a survey conducted by the Azim Premji University.

The survey of 240 respondents found that the average earnings of non-agricultural self employed and casual wage workers fell by 63 per cent.

As per the survey, women suffered more employment losses, as 77 per cent women lost their jobs against 66 per cent men.

Indicating distress, the survey said that nine in 10 migrant households reported consuming less food than before, while three out of four households or 75 per cent did not have money to buy a week”s worth of essentials.

More than half of the vulnerable households did not receive ration, while nearly seven in 10 migrants did not receive the same.

Seven out 10 (73 per cent) vulnerable households did not get any cash transfer, as per the survey.

The survey conducted by the Azim Premji University has shown heavy job losses among informal and migrant workers, up to 70-80 per cent, in the states of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Delhi and the city of Pune.

The disruption in the economy and labour markets in these places is enormous. Livelihoods have been devastated at unprecedented levels during the lockdown. The recovery from this could be slow and very painful, the survey said.

It found that Covid-19 and its associated safety measures, such as the lockdown since March 24, have taken a heavy toll on the economy, and particularly on the vulnerable informal and migrant workers and their families.

The sample for the survey was selected using the networks of civil society organisation collaborators. “The findings pertain only to the sample and are not representative of the entire state. Findings should not be compared across states,” it said.

For the state of Gujarat, a survey of 315 respondents showed that seven out of 10 (71 per cent) workers lost their employment. Urban workers were more severely affected with nine out 10 losing their jobs since the lockdown. As many as 96 per cent of regular salaried workers in the urban areas lost their jobs.

The survey said that nearly nine in 10 farmers were not able to sell their produce at full price. Nearly seven in 10 households did not have enough money for a week”s worth of essentials and the situation was worse in the urban areas at 89 per cent.

As many as 95 per cent of urban households reported reducing their food intake during the lockdown. Six per cent of urban households did not receive any cash transfer compared to 51 per cent of rural households.

In Rajasthan, a survey of 484 respondents showed that nearly nine in 10 (88 per cent) workers reported losing their employment. Casual wage workers in the urban areas were the worst hit, as 95 per cent of them lost their jobs. Sixty-eight per cent of salaried workers were not paid salaries or received only partial payments.

More than three in four households reported consuming less food during the lockdown while 63 per cent of vulnerable households did not have money to buy even a week”s worth of essentials.

Four in 10 households had to take a loan as a result of the lockdown, as per the survey. Three in 10 migrants working in the urban areas did not have a ration card. Nearly four in 10 vulnerable households in the urban areas received no cash transfers.

In Pune, a survey of 307 respondents showed that nearly eight out of 10 (78 per cent) lost their employment during the lockdown. Men were worse affected, as 86 per cent reported employment loss compared to 72 per cent women. More than two-third (67 per cent) of salaried workers did not receive salary or were paid partially.

Eight in 10 households were consuming less food than before, while nine in 10 households were unable to pay the next month”s rent.

Nearly four in 10 (37 per cent) households were unable to get ration and 96 per cent of vulnerable households did not have a Jan Dhan account.

Nine in 10 (94 per cent) vulnerable households did not receive any cash transfer, as per the survey.

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Covid in Delhi: Toll reaches 650, cases cross 25K mark



COVID-19 pandemic

New Delhi, June 4 : Coronavirus cases in the national capital witnessed a jump of 1,359 cases in a day, taking the total tally to 25,004 while the death toll has reached 650, the Delhi Health Department said on Thursday.

Out of the total cases, 14,456 were active, it said.

As per the Delhi Health reports, 44 new deaths were added, taking the total Covid toll in the national capital to 650. However, only 22 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours, while rest were late reporting.

The Health report said that the cumulative death figures refer to fatalities where the primary cause of death was found to be the infection, as per the report of the Death Audit Committee on the basis of case sheets received from various hospitals.

“Total 1,359 new cases were reported and the positive cases in the city reached 25,004. At least 9,898 patients have recovered from coronavirus so far in Delhi while 14,456 cases are active,” the Health Department said.

On May 28, for the first time since the outbreak of the infection, the cases reported in a day crossed 1,000-mark, at 1,024. May 29 was the second time that positive cases saw such a massive jump with 1,106 cases reported in a day. On May 30, 1,163 cases were reported in a day while on May 31, 1,295 cases were reported.

On Wednesday, a record 1,513 cases were reported.

Out of the total cases, 9,473 are under home isolation while 3,306 are in hospitals.

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