Coronavirus count: Another high in India, total near 5.5 lakh

India added over 19,000 new cases of the novel virus, taking the total tally to 5,48,318 in the world’s second-most populous country, according to the Health Ministry’s update today. This includes 16,475 deaths and 3,21,723 patients who have recovered.

The gap between recoveries and active cases of Covid-19 has crossed 1,00,000, the Union health ministry said on Sunday

The country will have to focus on defeating coronavirus and bolstering the economy as it exits from the lockdown and enters the “unlock” phase, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday underscoring the need to keep guard against the deadly virus.

The spread of the novel coronavirus in India has quickened in the last few days with new cases of Covid-19 and deaths reported every day. The epidemic has expanded its footprint in the country and has affected more than 5.4 lakh people since the first positive case was confirmed on January 30 in Kerala.

India reported 19,459 fresh cases, 12,010 recoveries and 380 deaths in the 24 hours preceding the Health Ministry’s update. Fresh cases dropped marginally from the record hit on Sunday.

Home-based Covid-19 testing kits could soon be a reality with the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi and the National Chemical Laboratory Pune working on an alternative testing method which can not only be performed by individuals at home but will also deliver quick results.

While the Centre and state governments have been trying hard to check the Covid-19 spread by tracking, isolating and treating infected people, the daily rise in India cases is worrisome.