India’s Covid-19 Case Fatality Rate Falls Below 2.5% for First Time, Among Lowest in World: Health Ministry

India’s COVID-19 case fatality rate is “progressively falling” and is currently at 2.49 per cent, which is one of the lowest in the world, the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday, crediting efficient clinical management of hospitalised cases for it.

According to a Health Ministry statement, the case fatality rate (CFR) has fallen below 2.5 per cent for the first time.

India’s COVID-19 case fatality rate declined from 3.2 per cent around May 12 to 2.82 per cent around June 1. It declined further to 2.72 per cent on July 10 and to 2.49 per cent at present.

The number of recovered COVID-19 patients exceeds India’s active caseload by 3,04,043 with 6.77 lakh people having recuperated from the disease so far, the ministry said as the coronavirus infection tally surged to 10,77,618 and the death toll rose to 26,816 on Sunday.

Medical attention is being provided to all the 3,73,379 active cases, in hospitals and home isolation, the ministry said. “The total number of recovered cases is 6,77,422. The recovery rate as of now is at 62.86 per cent,” the ministry said.

There are 29 states and union territories with a case fatality rate (CFR) lower than national average, with five of them having a CFR of zero and 14 having fatality rate of less than 1 per cent.

The focused efforts of the Centre and the state and UT governments on efficient clinical management of hospitalised cases have ensured that India’s case fatality rate has fallen below 2.5 per cent, the ministry said.

With effective containment strategy, aggressive testing and standardized clinical management protocols based on holistic standard of care approach, the CFR has significantly dipped, it said.

“The CFR is progressively falling and currently, it is 2.49 per cent. India has one of the lowest fatality rates in the world,” the ministry said.

Under the guidance of the Centre, the state and UT governments have ramped up testing and hospital infrastructure by combining public and private sector efforts, the ministry said.

Many states have conducted the population surveys to map and identify the vulnerable population like the elderly, pregnant women and those with comorbidities.

This, with the help of technological solutions like mobile apps, has ensured keeping the high-risk population under continuous observation, thus aiding early identification, timely clinical treatment and reducing fatalities, the ministry said.

“At the ground level, frontline health workers like ASHAs (Accredited Social Health Activists) and ANMs (Auxiliary Nursing Midwives) have done a commendable job of managing the migrant population and to enhance awareness at the community level.

“As a result, there are 29 States and UTs with CFR lower than India’s average. This shows commendable work done by public health apparatus of the country,” the ministry said.

Manipur, Nagaland, Sikkim, Mizoram, Andaman and Nicobar Islands have zero case fatality rate.

States and UTs having a CFR below the national average include Tripura (0.19%), Assam (0.23%), Kerala (0.34%), Odisha (0.51%), Goa (0.60%), Himachal Pradesh (0.75%), Bihar (0.83%), Telangana (0.93%), Andhra Pradesh (1.31%), Tamil Nadu (1.45%), Chandigarh (1.71%), Rajasthan (1.94%), Karnataka (2.08%) and Uttar Pradesh (2.36%).

India saw a record single-day jump of 38,902 COVID-19 cases pushing its tally to 10,77,618 on Sunday, while the death toll due to the disease rose to 26,816 with 543 fatalities being reported in 24 hours, according to the health ministry data updated at 8am.

The country’s testing infrastructure has been substantially ramped up. The testing strategy prescribed by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) allows all registered medical practitioners to recommend testing.

The Rapid Antigen Point of Care (POC) Test, coupled with the facilitation of widespread gold-standard RT-PCR based testing by states and UTs, has resulted in a surge in the number of samples tested. A total of 3,58,127 samples were tested in on Saturday.

With a total of 1,37,91,869 samples tested so far, the testing per million (TPM) for India has reached 9994.1, the ministry said.