Coronavirus live updates on 8th May: India’s recovery rate now 29.36%, total COVID-19 count rises to 56,342 with 3,390 new cases

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India’s recovery rate of COVID-19 continued to improve and stood at 29.36 per cent but the growth in cases also continued to be on the higher side at 3,390 as the total number of positive cases on Friday rose to 56,342.

Of the total cases, the number of active cases stood at 37,916 and 16,539 patients have been cured/discharged. There are 216 districts which have not reported any cases till date, 42 districts have seen no fresh cases in the last 28 days, while 29 districts have seen no fresh cases in the last 21 days, Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health, said at the regular media briefing on the COVID-19 situation in the country. He said a total of 36 districts have seen no fresh cases in the last 14 days, and 46 districts have seen no fresh cases in the last seven days. Health Ministry said 1,273 patients have been cured in the last 24 hours taking the country’s recovery rate to 29.36 per cent.
Health Minister Harsh Vardhan interacted with state Health Ministers of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Telangana and reviewed the preparedness efforts and containment measures regarding COVID-19. ICMR has initiated a multi-centre clinical trial called `PLACID trial’ to assess the safety and efficacy of Convalescent Plasma to Limit COVID-19 associated complications in moderate disease cases.

Majority of coronavirus cases continue to be reported from Maharashtra, Gujarat and Delhi. Maharashtra has the highest number of 17,974 cases. Gujarat has reported 7,012 cases while 5,980 cases have been reported in Delhi. Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said that 448 new coronavirus cases have been reported in Delhi and the total cases were 5,980. Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said that 103 cases of coronavirus have been detected in Mumbai’s Arthur Road jail. The Ministry of Home Affairs said that Railways has run 222 Shramik Special Trains for movement of stranded persons, and more than 2.5 lakh people have availed the facility so far. Two flights Singapore and Bangladesh under Vande Bharat Mission to bring back Indians stranded abroad landed in Delhi and Srinagar. Indian Navy’s amphibious warship INS Jalashwa will depart for Kochi from Male port today with some 750 Indian nationals onboard under Operation Samudra Setu. The Government of India and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) signed a US$ 500 million “COVID-19 Emergency Response and Health Systems Preparedness Project” on Friday to help India to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and strengthen its public health preparedness. This is the first-ever health sector support from the Bank to India. This new support will cover all states and Union Territories across India and address the needs of infected people, at-risk populations, medical and emergency personnel and service providers, medical and testing facilities, and national and animal health agencies.

Here are the top COVID-19 related updates of the day from the country:
1. A person, who returned from Chennai, has tested positive for COVID-19 in Ernakulam today, taking total number of active cases to 16 in Kerala.
2. In Tamil Nadu, 600 new COVID-19 positive cases were reported today including 399 in Chennai.
3. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) is all set to start a study in about 75 districts of the country that have the maximum number of COVID-19 cases to check whether community transmission has started. The study has been planned to be conducted through ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) test kits.
4. The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has received approval from Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) for its two clinical trial drugs – ‘favipiravir’ and ‘phytopharmaceutical’ – to combat coronavirus.
5. According to the data collected by various para-military forces like Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF), Indo Tibet border Police (ITBP), Central Industrial Police Force (CISF) and Sashtra Seema Bal (SSB), the total number of COVID-19 positive cases has crossed 500 mark and there are five fatalities.
6. A coronavirus suspected patient escaped from Delhi’s Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) Hospital on Thursday and reached Connaught Place. The hospital staff traced him and brought him back to the hospital.
7. The Union Health Ministry informed that a revised list of red, orange and green zones regarding COVID-19 will be circulated to the states soon.
8. India Post has entered into a tie-up with ICMR for delivery of its COVID-19 testing kits from its 16 regional depots to the 200 additional labs designated for COVID-19 testing across the country. ICMR has set a target of carrying out around one lakh tests across the country per day.
9. The Ministry of Health has issued additional guidelines regarding quarantine and isolation facilities in hotels, service apartments and lodges etc for returnees from abroad, contacts, isolation of suspected or confirmed cases.
10. Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari held meetings via video conferencing with the representatives of Events and Entertainment Management Association and members of Finance Industry Development Council on impact of COVID-19 on their sectors.

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