Mumbai: Covid-19 cases in Mumbai have skyrocketed nearly five times since February 1 when 328 cases were discovered, but the BMC isn’t too alarmed.
The falls are evenly distributed across the city, unlike the April-May or September-October periods when the densest slums were high-incidence clusters. Some boroughs such as T (Mulund) and K West (Andheri West) have seen weekly increases of 816 and 740 cases respectively since March 3, but most were seen fewer than 500 times in a week. Some even saw double-digit increases: “We are seeing a dispersed spread across the city,” said Suresh Kakani, BMC’s additional community commissioner.
While other cities are playing with lockdown-like clamps, the BMC has stepped up micro-planning. “We’re going to zoom into areas where cases come up and do massive testing and tracing,” said a health department doctor.
In the medical field, too, Covid-19 cases seem to be less critical in this third surge than the peak values in the April-May and September-October periods.
“Cases seem less virulent now,” said Dr. Mangala Gomare, BMC Executive Health Officer. Your statement is supported by statistics. For example, the proportion of critical patients is now lower than in September. Only 373 patients are critical in various hospitals in the city.
“Most patients appear to be asymptomatic or have a mild infection that can be treated at home,” she said.
However, it is these asymptomatic patients who prove difficult to treat. You fail to adhere to the 14 day quarantine rules and could potentially spread the disease. “We have asked residential colonies to complain to us about such residents so that we can transfer them to an institutional quarantine facility,” she said.
The number of BMC Covid approvals also seems to support the “non-virulent” theory. About 54% of the beds in the intensive care unit are now occupied, while in the previous bursts almost 100% were occupied. “Beds in private Covid hospitals are full, but BMC has more than adequate unoccupied beds,” said Dr. Shashank Joshi, a senior endocrinologist at Lilavati Hospital who is a member of the state task force on Covid-19.