New coronavirus cases in India have been hovering around the 30,000-mark for a few days now, at a time when the total tally of confirmed cases is headed towards the 1-crore mark.
India reported 30,254 new cases in the last 24 hours, taking the total tally to over 98.5 lakh in the world’s second-worst infected nation, according to the Health Ministry’s update as of 8 a.m. on Dec. 13. That includes over 93.5 lakh recoveries and and more than 1.43 lakh deaths.
At over 33,136, daily recoveries continued to surpass new cases for over two weeks now. Active cases remained below the 4-lakh-mark for a seventh day in a row.
The central and state governments are now making an effort to plan a systematic vaccination drive. An estimated one crore frontline health workers are set to receive the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine whenever it becomes available, with around 92% of government hospitals and 55% of private hospitals across the country providing data identifying the workers.
Mumbai, one of the worst affected cities in the country, has formed 500 teams of at least five members each that will be deployed for administering the vaccine.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday announced that the state would vaccinate its people free of cost. “No one will be charged for the vaccine. This is the stand of the government,” he told reporters at Kannur. Kerala is the latest to announce free of cost Covid-19 vaccine for its people. States, including Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh, have already made a similar announcement.
Gearing up for distribution of Covid-19 vaccine when it is made available, the Telangana government has also constituted committees at the state, district and mandal levels for planning and execution, with priority to high risk groups, followed by others.
The Centre on Tuesday said three Covid-19 vaccines, developed by Bharat Biotech, Serum Institute of India and Pfizer, are under active consideration of India’s drug regulator and there is hope that early licensure is possible for all or any of them. Five vaccine candidates are under different phases of clinical trials in the country.
South Korea reported a record number of coronavirus cases for a second consecutive day. Japan may halt its travel subsidy program in the cities of Tokyo and Nagoya amid rising infections, according to local media.
Peru has suspended vaccine trials after an adverse event, while Brazil has sent its immunization plan to the nation’s top court. Italy moved ahead of the U.K. as the European country with the most virus-related deaths, while the worldwide toll rose to more than 1.6 million.
Globally, over 71.6 million have contracted the virus so far.