Centre advises States and UTs to not let their guard down in view of the new ‘Omicron’ variant

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare :

The Centre has advised States and UTs to not let their guard down and maintain their preparedness for fighting COVID19 (and its variants) in view of the new variant Omicron (designated as a Variant of Concern by WHO on 26th November 2021). 

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan reviewed the public health preparedness of the States for fighting COVID19 and the Omicron variant along with progress of vaccination with Health Secretaries and NHM MDs of States and UTs, through video conference (VC) today.

He highlighted the trajectory of COVID and brought attention to temerging evidence on the Omicron variant of COVID-19 driving the growing number of cases worldwide.

  • States advised to be vigilant and Monitor Case Positivity, Doubling Rate, Clusters of New Cases across Districts.
  • “Observe all precautions; don’t let your guard down”
  • Local/District Administration responsible for prompt initiation of Evidence-based Actions for COVID Control & Management.
  • States to consider Local Curbs/Restrictions ahead of upcoming festive season.
  • Existing National Clinical Management Protocol remains unchanged for Omicron.
  • “Full Vaccination protects against Severe Illness and Hospitalization including Omicron; Door-to-door Vaccination to be strengthened”

25 Omicron cases have been reported from 5 states; Omicron cases detected <0.04% of total variants detected; All detected cases have mild symptoms : Health Ministry


Daily cases recorded below 10,000 for 14 consecutive days 52.8% of the total cases in the last week are reported from Kerala.

More than 43% of active COVID19 cases are from Kerala Overall positivity across the country is below 2% for almost 2.5 months however, there are still a large number of districts reporting high case positivity.

More than 53% of the adult population in the country is now fully Vaccinated with 2 doses of COVID19 vaccine 131 Crore total Vaccine doses have been administered so far.

25 Omicron cases have been reported from 5 states – Delhi, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Karnataka. Omicron cases detected <0.04% of total variants detected; All detected cases have mild symptoms.

UK, Denmark, and South Africa – top 3 countries with highest Omicron cases Total Omicron cases across the world – 2936; probable cases – 78,064.

Scientific evidences for diagnosis and treatment are being reviewed regularly; currently, COVID19 treatment remains unchanged at the moment The vaccination drive is ongoing and we are doing up to 80 lakh vaccination per day.

Union Health Ministry releases NFHS-5 Phase II Findings; says data from NFHS will be beneficial to all line ministries, State Govts and other stakeholders


Dr. Vinod Kumar Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog and Shri Rajesh Bhushan,Secretary, Union Ministry of Health and FamilyWelfare, Government of India, released the Factsheets of key indicators on population, reproductive and child health, family welfare, nutrition and others for India and 14 States/UTs (clubbed under Phase-II) of the 2019-21 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) here today.

The States and UTs which were surveyed in the Phase-II are Arunachal Pradesh, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, NCT of Delhi, Odisha, Puducherry, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh andUttarakhand. The findings of NFHS-5 in respect of 22 States & UTs covered in Phase-I were released in December, 2020.

The main objective of successive rounds of the NFHS is to provide reliableand comparable data relating to health and family welfare and other emerging issues.

The NFHS-5 survey work has been conducted in around 6.1 lakh sample households from 707 districts (as on March, 2017) of the country; covering 724,115 women and 101,839 men to provide disaggregated estimates up to districtlevel.

All the results of NFHS-5 are available in the public domain on the Ministry website (www.mohfw.gov.in).

The all-India and State/UT level factsheet released includes information on 131 key indicators. It provides information on important indicators which arehelpful in tracking the progress of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the country. 

As India witnesses high single day Recoveries, several States/UTs are reporting more patients recovering than the new cases: Health Ministry

Union Health Ministry/PIB/MIB:

India’s steep rise in Recoveries has been possible due to focussed and effective implementation of Centre-led strategies through a ‘Whole of Government’ approach.

Focus on 5T- TEST, TRACK, TRACE, TREAT, TECHNOLOGY- has resulted in high level of sustained nation wide outcomes.

As India witnesses high single day RECOVERIES, several States/UTs are reporting more patients recovering than the new cases.

The average single day recoveries have touched a record high of 90,000 in the recent days.

States with 1-20000 confirmed cases

States with 20001-160000 confirmed cases

States with 160000+ confirmed cases

Total no. of confirmed cases so far

In the past five months, more than 3/4 of COVID cases have recovered and less than 1/4 is active now : Health Ministry

Source : PIB

In pursuance of the Centre’s strategic and graded TEST, TRACK and TREAT approach, India is registering continuous progress on the recovery front and reduction in the fatality rate.  In the past five months, more than 3/4 of COVID-19 cases have recovered and less than 1/4 is active now.

With more patients recovering and being discharged from home isolation (in case of mild and moderate cases) and hospitals (severe and critical cases), India’s COVID-19 recoveries is nearing 26 lakh. 60,177 have recovered in the last 24 hours. With these national figures, the Recovery Rate amongst the COVID-19 has touched 76.28%.

The number of recoveries is nearly 3.5 times the active cases, which comprise 21.90% of the total cases. Higher number of recoveries has led to a constantly growing difference between recoveries and active cases. Crossing 18 lakhs, the difference stands at 18, 41,925 today.

Effective treatment of the positive cases has resulted in a progressively dipping Case Fatality Rate, which is pegged at 1.82% today.

COVID Positivity rate has come down from 11% to 8% : Health Ministry

On the basis of 7-day rolling average, positivity rate was 11% during the first week of August; has come down to 8%, today.

Secretary, ministry of health

Testing in India has steeply increased to more than 9 lakh tests per day : Health Ministry

Ministry of Health :

  • Testing in India has steeply increased to more than 9 lakh tests per day.
  • This is bolstered with all States/UTs testing more than 140 tests/day/million population as advised by WHO.
  • Aggressive TESTING leads to early identification and isolation of COVID19 positive cases.
  • This, coupled with efficient clinical treatment, keeps the Fatality Rate down.

DCGI approves Phase II+III trials of Oxford University vaccine by Serum Institute, Pune

Source : PIB

The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has given approval to Serum Institute of India, Pune to conduct Phase II+III clinical trials of Oxford University-Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine (COVISHIELD) in India. This will hasten the development of the COVID-19 vaccine.

India continues to improve the Case Fatality Rate (CFR), and maintain its global position of having one of the lowest COVID fatalities rates. With a further fall, the current CFR touched 2.11% today. This is the outcome of the well conceived and effectively implemented strategy of “Test, Track and Treat” which has guided the COVID management in the country.

The management strategy of COVID-19 also focuses on early detection and isolation of cases with seamless patient management and prioritising care of the high-risk population using field health care workers leading to increase in recoveries across the country. India has seen more than 40,574 patients recovered in the last 24 hours. This takes the total recoveries to 11,86,203 and Recovery Rate to 65.77% amongst COVID-19 patients.

With improving daily recovery number, the gap between the recovered cases & the active cases has increased to more than 6 lakh. Presently, it is 6,06,846. This means the actual active case load is 5,79,357 and all are under medical supervision.

India’s Case Fatality Rate (CFR) lowest at 2.15% since 1st Lockdown; More than 36,500 recovered in the last 24 hours : Health Ministry

Source : PIB

India continues to maintain the record of registering and maintaining the lowest COVID-19 mortality rate at the global platform. The Case Fatality Rate stands at 2.15% today and it is lowest since the 1st Lockdown started. It has been continuously reducing from around 3.33% in mid-June. 

This is a testimony to the focused, coordinated, pre-emptive, graded and evolving “Test Track Treat” strategy and efforts of the Centre along with the State/UT governments. Emphasis on early detection through aggressive testing and effective clinical management of the hospitalized cases have resulted in the continuously falling Case Fatality Rate indicating that India has been able to successfully contain the fatality rate of COVID-19.

Along with the CFR been kept a low rate, the successful implementation of effective containment strategy, aggressive testing and standardized clinical management protocols based on a comprehensive Standard of Care approach have resulted in a consistent addition of more than 30,000 recoveries/day.

The total number of recovered cases is nearly 11 lakh. With 36,569 patients discharged in the last 24 hours, the total recoveries have jumped to 10,94,374. The recovery rate stands at 64.53% amongst COVID-19 patients.

With such consistent increase in recoveries, the gap between recovered patients and active COVID-19 cases currently stands at 5,29,271. Active cases (5,65,103) are under medical supervision.

COVID19 Vaccine

24 COVID19 vaccine candidates in the world are under clinical evaluation – undergoing human trials, 3 vaccines are in Phase-3 clinical trials : Health Ministry

Media Briefing by Health Ministry on Coronavirus situation in the Country :

  • More than 10 lakh patients in Indian have recovered from COVID19 so far, this is not just a big piece of good news but a big achievement as well It shows how our public health system worked together and saved more than 10 lakh lives
  • The landmark recovery of more than 1 million COVID19 recoveries has been achieved due to the selfless work, dedication and commitment to duty, of our frontline health care workers, it is a time for us to stand up and applaud.
  • COVID19 Recovery Rate is continuously rising From less than 8% in April, it is now more than 64%, informs Health Secretary.
  • 16 states report a COVID19 recovery rate which is higher than the national rate.
  • There is a continuous decrease in proportion of active COVID19 cases and a progressive increase in proportion of recovered cases.
  • The COVID19 case load of India is 5.28 lakh, more than 10.2 lakh have recovered No. of recovered cases is 1.9 times more than that of active cases.
  • India’s COVID19 case fatality rate at 2.21% is amongst the lowest in the world, except Russia, most developed western countries have a fatality rate which is 5-7 times higher than that of India.
  • Based on 7-day rolling averages, 21 states and UTs have a COVID19 positivity rate which is less than 10% We are engaging with other states to help them change their testing strategy and reduce positivity rate.
  • Herd Immunity is a kind of indirect protection from an infectious disease like COVID19; it happens only when a population becomes immune, either through vaccination or previous infection.
  • Is developing HerdImmunity via previous COVID19 infection a strategic option/choice for India? No, it is not, in a country like India, with a population of roughly 138 crores, it can only be an outcome, at a very high cost.

HerdImmunity can never be a strategic option, it can be achieved through immunization, in future. It is far, hence we need to sustain COVID19-appropriate behaviours

Ministy of Health
  • 24 COVID19 vaccine candidates in the world are under clinical evaluation – undergoing human trials, 141 vaccine candidates in pre-clinical evaluation stage – either in research / animal studies stage, 3 COVID19 vaccines are in Phase-3 clinical trials.

Also read :

With highest ever single day recoveries of nearly 30,000, the total number of recoveries crosses 7.82 lakhs : Health Ministry

With highest ever single day recoveries of nearly 30,000, the total number of recoveries crosses 7.82 lakhs : Health Ministry

Source : PIB

  • For the second day in a row, recoveries in a single day continue to post significant rise. The last 24 hours saw the highest ever single day number of patients cured and discharged i.e. 29,557. While the total number of recovered cases has jumped to 7,82,606, there has been appreciable growth in the recovery rate, which stands at 63.18%.
  • Higher number of patients getting cured and discharged has contributed to increasing gap between recovered and total active cases. It is pegged at 3,56,439 today.
  • This accomplishment can be attributed to the Union Government led COVID-19 management strategies. Sustained efforts by the Center and State/UTs are resulting in more effective containment, aggressive testing, and prompt and efficient clinical treatment strategies.
  • These are guided by the teams of domain experts in the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare such as the Joint Monitoring Group (JMG) and ably complemented by the technical experts at AIIMS, New Delhi, Centres of Excellence in various States/UTs, ICMR and NCDC.
  • The Union Government continues to coordinate with the efforts of the State/UTs by sending Central teams of experts to areas witnessing increase in caseload and handholding of COVID hospitals in States through the tele-consultation program led by AIIMS, New Delhi.
  • These combined efforts have resulted in Case Fatality Rate being managed at low levels. It is 2.41%, as on date, and steadily declining.
  • This has also helped in reducing the actual case load of COVID-19 cases which remains confined to 4,26,167 Active patients only.

India’s Covid19 Testing Per Million crosses 10,000 : Health Ministry

Ministry of Health :

  • India’s Covid19 Testing Per Million crosses 10,000.
  • 23 States/UTs have recorded higher Tests Per Million than the national average.
  • Aggressive testing, timely tracing/tracking and prompt treatment are the key in the fight against COVID19.

Source : PIB


Approximately 1,000 human volunteers are participating in clinical trials for each of the two indigenous Indian vaccine : DG, ICMR

Media briefing on the current COVID19 situation in the country :

  • India’s Daily Growth Rate of New Cases Declining, Total recovered cases about 1.8 times the number of Active Cases.
  • 20 States/UTs have higher Recovery rate than the national average of 63%.
  • 22 States are currently performing more than 140 tests per day per million population or those states carrying out Comprehensive Testing in accordance with the guidance note issued by @WHO in the context of COVID19.
  • COVID19 cases per million in India is amongst the lowest in the world; Deaths per million population in India too is amongst the lowest in the world.
  • Despite being the second-most populous country of the world, the daily growth rate of new COVID19 cases in India has been coming down continuously from around 38.2% in March to 3.24% on 12th July 2020.
  • In many states, no. of daily discharges from hospitals is more than no. of daily admission. 86% of total active COVID19 cases are confined to just 10 states.
  • 22 states are doing more than 140 COVID19 tests per day/million as per Comprehensive Testing guidance note by WHO Centre is asking the remaining states and UTs to increase testing accordingly.
  • 60% of the vaccines supplied in the world are of Indian origin, India is perceived and is an important player in the vaccine supply for the world.
  • Any #COVID19 vaccine produced or developed in any part of the world will ultimately have to be scaled up either by India or by China Every country which is developing vaccine is in communication with India since they are aware India is a major producer.
  • Two indigenous Indian Candidate vaccines have got clearance to start early phase human trials this month. Approximately 1,000 human volunteers are participating in clinical trials for each of this two indigenous vaccine.
  • Pre-clinical experiments for these as well as other vaccines are also being done at NIV, Pune.
  • Fast-tracking COVID19 vaccine development is a moral duty. Russia and China have fast-tracked the process, USA and UK too are trying to fast-track the development programme India too is trying to fast-track its two indigenous vaccine candidates.

Two entirely indigenous Indian vaccine candidates have concluded animal toxicity studies after approval, the toxicity data has been shared with DCGI, they will now go for human trials :Health Ministry

Media briefing on the current COVID19 situation in the country :

  • There is no sign of community transmission in India. However, we have localised outbreaks in certain geographical areas. Out of 733 districts, only 49 districts account for 80% of COVID cases.
  • India has one of the lowest COVID19 cases per million population in the world. India’s cases per million population are 538 while the global average is at 1497
  • As per a study by WHO, there are indications that the virus may be airborne, however, it is an evolving situation. We are keeping abreast on this particular aspect. Maintaining a distance of atleast 6 feet can help in fighting the virus.
  • Recently, ICMR Delhi has validated and approved the use of a rapid antigen point of care test in containment zones of various states and hospitals: Indian Council of Medical Research.
  • The rate of the continuous increase in recovery rate is appreciable; we are currently at a 62.09 % recovery rate.
  • Plasma therapy has been added as a form of investigational therapy, where it may be used has been specified in clinical guidelines issued by the Health Ministry. Randomized trials are being conducted under the aegis of
  • If we follow our contact tracing protocols, we are in a position to trace and track all close contacts of reported COVID19 cases within 72 hours, in such a scenario, it is not justified to say that there is community transmission
  • Two entirely indigenous Indian vaccine candidates have concluded animal toxicity studies after approval, the toxicity data has been shared with DCGI, they will now go for human trials.
  • Most mathematical models focus only on behaviour of COVID19 virus, not on response of national and state governments or of community. We will get better results if we focus more on containment and management measures.
  • Drugs Controller General of India has asked drug manufacturers to set up 24/7 helplines where patients & caregivers can contact in case of non-availability or overcharging of drugs He has also asked them to put their distribution network details on their websites.

Source & Pic Credit : PIB

‘India is not in community transmission; lockdown has been successful in keeping it low & preventing rapid spread’

Media briefing on current COVID19 situation in the country by MOHFW and Prof Bhargava, DG, ICMR Delhi :

  • India is not in community transmission; We have to continue with our strategy of testing, tracing, tracking, quarantine and containment measures; We should not give up our guard on these.
  • Symptomatic person or a suspect case should get in touch with states’ helpline numbers & try to access the hospital facilities as advised; In addition to this, we have requested the States to streamline the helpline system and provide guidance.
  • Result of Population based serosurvey in districts – Lockdown/containment has been successful in keeping it low & preventing rapid spread
  • Sero-survey tests for presence of IgG antibodies. The objective of this survey is to provide a scientific guidance in containing COVID19 infection.
  • .ICMRDELHI conducted the first serosurvey for Covid19 in May 2020 in collaboration with state health departments, NCDC, and WHO India. Part 1 has been completed and Part 2 is ongoing.
  • India’s mortality per Lakh Population amongst the Lowest in the World. Also India’s cases per Lakh Population amongst the Lowest in the World.
  • Way Forward: Non Pharmacological Interventions such as physical distancing, use of face mask/cover, hand hygiene, cough etiquette must be followed strictly.

‘No. of COVID19 cases averted due to lockdown is in range of 14 – 29 lakh No. of lives saved – 37,000 – 78,000’

Press Briefing on the actions taken, preparedness & updates on COVID-19 :

  • 48,534 people cured of COVID19 66,330 people under active medical supervision 3,334 patients cured in last 24 hours Recovery rate has improved to ~ 41% Case fatality rate has improved to 3.02%
  • 27,55,714 #COVID19 tests have been done till 1 PM today Today has been the 4th day when more than 1 lakh tests have been done in one day.

Chairman, Empowered Group 1 presented how India’s timely, graded, proactive and preemptive response has helped the nation:

  • The growth rate of COVID19 cases has witnessed a steady fall from April 3, 2020, when lockdown was able to put a brake on the speed of growth. The number of cases today would have been much higher, had lockdown not been implemented.
  • Like no. of cases, growth rate of no. of COVID19 deaths too has fallen significantly due to lockdown, marking a notable difference between pre-lockdown and post-lockdown situations.
  • 80% of active cases are in just 5 states, more than 60% cases are in just 5 cities, the spread of #COVID19 infection has remained limited to certain areas, this is no small achievement, also gives confidence to open up other areas.
  • This is not a battle, but a movement, a Jan Andolan. Awareness is not enough, change in behaviour is required. Our biggest strength going forward will be our Sankalp which will be required to transform it into Siddhi.
  • We have to be very cautious. If we relax, virus will spread. We need to adopt practices such as wearing masks, maintaining DoGajKiDoori, hygiene, protecting vulnerable, boost our immunity, which make it difficult for the virus to spread

Secretary, @GoIStats presented model-based estimates on the COVID19 cases and deaths which have been prevented due to lockdown :

  • The challenge in modelling COVID19 has been that there is no parallel here, for a pandemic like COVID-19; hence, we have been learning as we went along.
  • According to @BCG‘s model, lockdown has saved between 1.2 – 2.1 lakh lives, number of COVID19 cases averted is between 36 – 70 lakh
  • According to @thePHFI, nearly 78,000 lives have been saved due to lockdown
  • To cut the story short… No. of #COVID19 cases averted due to lockdown is in range of 14 – 29 lakh No. of lives saved – 37,000 – 78,000
  • We are fully confident that lockdown, with full public cooperation, has reaped rich dividends.

Lockdown has been highly beneficial in our fight against COVID19, we are confident that we are on the right track

An in-depth deliberation was held on containment strategy and management aspects of COVID19 at the Group of Ministers meeting

  • Today, I chaired the 15th high-level GoM meeting at the Health Ministry to review, monitor & evaluate the evolving situation on COVID19.
  • A presentation on the ground situation as well as the latest statistics wrt corona virus was also made.
  • The total no of global COVID19 positive cases stands at 42,48,389 with fatality rate pegged at 6.92%, whereas in India, the total number of positive cases stand at 81,970 with fatality rate at 3.23%.
  • At GoM, it was also highlighted that the impact of lockdown was seen on the Doubling Rate which improved from 3.4 days in the pre-lockdown week to 12.9 days in the last week.
  • The Group of Ministers GoM held in-depth deliberation on containment strategy and management aspects of COVID19, as well as the measures being taken by the Centre & across various States.

‘CSIR’s National Aerospace Laboratories, Bangalore, has developed a Non-Invasive BiPAP Ventilator in a record time of 36 days to treat COVID-19 patients’

Dr Harsh Vardhan – Union Minister for Health:

  • CSIR- National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) Bangalore, a constituent of CSIR_IND has developed a Non-Invasive BiPAP Ventilator in a record time of 36 days to treat COVID-19 patients.
  • BiPAP Non-Invasive ventilator is a microcontroller-based precise closed-loop adaptive control system with a built-in biocompatible “3D printed manifold & coupler” with HEPA filter (Highly Efficient Particulate Air Filter).
  • These unique features help to alleviate the fear of the virus spread.
  • It has features like Spontaneous, CPAP, Timed, AUTO BIPAP modes with provision to connect Oxygen concentrator or Enrichment unit externally.
  • The system has been certified for safety and performance by NABL accredited agencies.
  • The system has undergone stringent biomedical tests and beta clinical trials at NAL Health Centre.
  • This is ideal for treating COVID 19 patients in Wards, Makeshift Hospitals, dispensaries & home in current Indian Covid_19 scenario.
  • CSIR NAL is in process of taking it forward with the regulatory authorities for the approval and expected to get shortly.

An app has been developed which enables field level officers to mark hot spots and containment zones on map, so that required guidelines can be enforced in that area : Ajay Sawhney, Chairman, Empowered Group 9

Excerpts from the Press briefing on the actions taken, preparedness and updates on COVID-19 :

  • 67,152 confirmed COVID19 cases so far (4,213 new cases since yesterday), 44,029 cases are under active medical supervision, 20,917 people cured so far; 1559 in the last 24 hours, Total recovery rate 31.15%
  • National Institute of Virology, Pune has developed and validated indigenous IgG ELISA test Covid Kavach Elisa for antibody detection for COVID19
  • An app has been developed which enables field level officers to mark hot spots and containment zones on map, so that required guidelines can be enforced in that area.
  • Aarogya Setu App will soon reach a user base of 10 crore; it has created a world record in being the fastest app to reach 5 crore users. Privacy first – this has been the principle on which the app has been developed.
  • We combine the movement history of positive patients with the self-assessment data submitted by others, this enables us to identify potential hot spot areas and take preventive action; info on 697 such spots have been sent to states/districts.
  • It is a very irresponsible news; COVID19 does not affect a particular religion or a race or an area: @MoHFW_INDIA on certain media reports claiming that government is mulling religion based mapping of hotspots.
  • We have to try together that whoever develops symptoms of COVID19 should not hide, rather step out and get timely treatment. If we do not do this, we will not only be ill but put our families’ health at risk