Bengaluru to overtake Mumbai in 3 weeks PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 21 July 2020 02:45
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With new infections rising fast and the city increasing testing levels dramatically, Bengaluru may overtake Mumbai when it comes to the number of Covid-19-infected persons. By the second week of next month, Bengaluru will have 1.4 lakh cases versus Mumbai’s likely 1.3 lakh. Just a month ago, on June 21, Bengaluru had a mere 1,083 cases versus Mumbai’s 65,265.

While Mumbai’s infections were growing at 2% per day a month ago and Bengaluru at 10%, Mumbai’s infection growth has fallen to 1.3% while Bengaluru’s is still 8.7%.

Much of Bengaluru’s rise in Covid-infected persons, of course, has been the result of a nearly seven-fold hike in testing from 2,501 per day a month ago to 14,929 on July 18; Mumbai, meanwhile, has seen a much smaller step up in testing, from 4,265 to 5,849.

Bengaluru’s infections, however, will continue to rise as, unlike Mumbai, it’s positivity —new infections as a share of new tests — is still rising, from 5.5% a month ago to 14.4% on July 18. Moreover, since a large part of Bengaluru’s ramp-up in testing was by using the Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) that detect fewer infections than the conventional RT-PCR tests, it is also possible that the 14.5% number underestimates the positivity.

In the case of Mumbai, it is true, more testing will result in more infections being uncovered as the city’s positivity is still a high 20.5%, though lower than 28.1% a month ago.

Even more worrying for Bengaluru is the rising deaths; 90% of the Covid-19 deaths so far have taken place in the last 20 days. A reason for this may be a shortage of infrastructure in government hospitals, though around a third of patients are admitted to government hospitals and the rest in private hospitals. While private hospitals are not short of beds right now — they have 7,014 beds reserved for Covid-19 — they will run into problems within a few months as they have a total of 23,271 beds.


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