New infections at 15K; India begins COVID-19 vaccination drive

January 16, 2021 0 By FM

India recorded 15,151 new COVID-19 infections on Friday. The cumulative confirmed cases have now risen to 1,05,43,659, of which 2,08,261 are active infections. The nation also recorded 16,801 recoveries and 176 deaths on the day taking the total recoveries and fatalities to 1,01,78,883 and 1,52,130 respectively.

The total number of persons found positive with the UK strain of COVID-19 was 114 on Friday, said the health ministry.

Kerala reported 5,624 new COVID19 cases pushing its overall caseload to 8,36,884 on Friday. The active cases in the state stood at 67,498 after recording 4,603 new recoveries and 23 deaths on the past day. The death toll has reached 3,416 till now.

Maharashtra reported 3,145 new infections, 3,500 recoveries and 45 deaths from the infection on Friday. The total confirmed case tally of the state has risen to 19,84,768, of which 52,152 are active infections. The state has seen 18,81,088 recoveries and 50,336 deaths so far.

The state’s recovery rate is 94.78%, while the case fatality rate is 2.54%. “Of 1,36,84,589 laboratory samples tested so far, 19,84,768 (with the case positivity rate down to 14.50%) have returned positive, with over 61,000 samples being tested in the last 24 hours,” said State Surveillance Officer Dr. Pradeep Awate. The cumulative recoveries stand at 18,81,088. A total of 2,24,851 people in the state are in home quarantine and 2,240 are in institutional quarantine.

Even as fresh cases of coronavirus are on the decline in Gujarat, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Friday asserted that night curfew will remain in place in four major cities including Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara and Rajkot. The night curfew which begins after 10 pm will continue for 15 more days in all four cities. As on Friday, Gujarat’s COVID-19 tally stood at 2,54,849 cases, including 4,360 fatalities.

The first phase of the pan-India roll out of the COVID-19 vaccination drive began at 10:30 am on January 16 via video conferencing. The programme is launched at a total of 3006 session sites across all states/UTs, which will be connected virtually throughout the exercise.

The vaccination programme is aimed at inoculating 3 crore health and other frontline workers first. Pregnant and lactating women have not been a part of any COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial so far and should not receive the vaccine at this time, cautioned the health ministry in its note on precautions and contraindications for the vaccines. It added that vaccine-specific contraindications may apply as new information becomes available.