Coronavirus India lockdown Day 181 live updates | Mumbai’s KEM hospital starts trials of Covishield vaccine

Coronavirus India lockdown Day 181 live updates | Mumbai’s KEM hospital starts trials of Covishield vaccine

The Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech Limited, which is developing a vaccine candidate, Covaxin, based on an inactivated virus, reported that its tests on animals showed no presence of the virus.

With India recording the highest number of COVID-19 recoveries in the world, the government on Tuesday said that for the past four consecutive days the number of daily recovered cases surpassed the new infections reported per day.

Addressing a press briefing, Union Health Ministry Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said India has the highest number of recovered cases in the world at 44,97,867.

You can track coronavirus cases, deaths and testing rates at the national and State levels here. A list of State Helpline numbers is available as well.

Here are the latest updates:

2.30 pm | Madhya Pradesh

Watch | Therapies for disabled children hit due to COVID-19 in Bhopal

As centres for the disabled remain shut and the pandemic scare looms, continuing therapies for children born with disabilities whose parents or grandparents survived the tragedy and those affected by poisoned water bodies owing to reported unscientific disposal of chemical waste by the pesticide plant, have been hit. Autistic children are more restless and irritable now, while those with cerebral palsy have regained muscle tightness, say experts.

2 pm | New Delhi

Daily recoveries exceed daily cases for 5th day: Health Ministry

Daily Covid-19 recoveries have exceeded the new cases for the fifth consecutive day, the Union Health Ministry said Wednesday, as the total recoveries surged to 45,87,613 pushing the national recovery rate to 81.25%.

A total of 89,746 recoveries have been registered against 83,347 new coronavirus cases in a span of 24 hours, according to the Health Ministry data.

With its focussed strategies and coordinated and proactive measures, India is reporting a steep increase in recoveries, the ministry said.

“New recoveries in India have exceeded the new cases for the fifth consecutive day,” it said, adding, “India has the highest recovered cases in the world. It contributes 19.5 per cent to the global recoveries.”

Seventeen states and UTs have more new recoveries than new cases. – PTI

1.30 pm | Mumbai

KEM Hospital starts trials of Covishield vaccine

The civic-run King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital in Mumbai on Wednesday began phase II and III trials of the Oxford Covishield vaccine for COVID-19, an official said.

The hospital, located in Parel area, on Tuesday got the approval of the Maharashtra ethics committee for conducting the vaccine trials.

KEM Hospital Dean Dr. Hemant Deshmukh told PTI that the hospital has started screening volunteers for the trials.

The medical facility will be conducting the trials on 100 volunteers, he said.

The city-based B.Y.L. Nair Hospital, another facility run by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, has also received approval for conducting trials of the vaccine.

Both the KEM and Nair hospitals will be conducting the trials collectively on over 200 volunteers, sources said.

As part of the trials, volunteers who are found negative for coronavirus in both RT-PCR and antigen tests will be given the vaccine, they said.

Trials of the Oxford vaccine candidate are being conducted in Pune also.

The Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) has partnered with British-Swedish pharma company AstraZeneca for manufacturing the COVID-19 vaccine candidate, being developed by the University of Oxford, U.K.


12.40 pm | Kerala

Kerala Agriculture Minister tests positive

Kerala Agriculture Minister V. S. Sunil Kumar has tested positive for COVID-19.

He is the third minister in the Pinarayi Vijayan Cabinet to be diagnosed with COVID-19 after Finance Minister T. M. Thomas Isaac and Industries Minister E. P. Jayarajan.

12.00 pm

Amid COVID-19 impact, Indian economy forecast to contract 5.9% in 2020: U.N.

Impacted by disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, India’s economy is forecast to contract by 5.9% in 2020, the U.N. has said in a report, warning that while growth will rebound next year, the contraction is likely to translate into a permanent income loss.

11.30 am | Karnataka

Expert panel has not performed its duty: HC

The High Court of Karnataka on Tuesday said that the State-level expert committee, set by the State government on the direction of the Supreme Court to monitor COVID-19 hospitals, has not performed the duties assigned to it.

If the committee was not able to perform its duties, then the State government would have to revamp the committee to activate it, the HC made it clear in its order.

11.00 am | Karnataka

ASHA workers to stage State-level protest at Freedom Park

Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) workers are on a warpath again. After withdrawing their 20-day strike in July following an assurance from the Health Minister B. Sriramulu that their demand for a fixed monthly honorarium of ₹12,000 would be considered, ASHA workers will stage a massive State-level protest at Freedom Park on Wednesday.

10.30 am | Sikkim

Sikkim CM’s wife test positive for COVID-19

Sikkim Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang’s wife Krishna Rai and some of her family members have tested positive for COVID-19.

In a Facebook post she said: “We made all possible efforts to keep corona at bay but unfortunately we got infected. I appeal to those who came in contact with us to get themselves tested and my close contacts to go into quarantine.”

Meanwhile, an order issued by the Health department said that doctors and nurses have been deputed to Mintokgang, the official residence of the Chief Minister which has now been turned into a Corona Care Centre.

The chief minister is staying in another house.


10.00 am | Karnataka

Deputy CM tests positive

Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister Govind M. Karjol tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday.

He is the second Deputy Chief Minister to have tested positive for the virus. Earlier, C.N. Aswath Narayan also announced that he had tested positive and is currently under home isolation.

9.30 am | Maharashtra

Varsha Gaikwad tests positive

Maharashtra Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday. Ms. Gaikwad represents Dharavi constituency and was instrumental in bringing down the number of novel coronavirus patients in one of the biggest slums in the country.

“I request everyone who has come in my contact to be careful and follow protocol. Stay safe. Take care,” she tweeted.

9.00 am | Tamil Nadu

Health department deputy directors told to prepare micro plan for COVID-19 vaccination

The Director of Public Health (DPH) and Preventive Medicine has instructed all Deputy Directors of Health Services to prepare a micro plan, at the level of health sub-centres (HSC), primary health centres (PHC) and districts, for carrying out vaccination against COVID-19 in the near future.

8.30 am | Andhra Pradesh

COVID-19 curve shows downward trend in Kurnool

Devotees wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus offer prayers at Shakti Ganesh temple in Hyderabad on Sept. 22, 2020.

Devotees wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus offer prayers at Shakti Ganesh temple in Hyderabad on Sept. 22, 2020.  
| Photo Credit:

With the number of active COVID-19 cases falling by the day, and the number of new positive cases also showing a downward trend, the Government General Hospital in Kurnool, designated as a State COVID-19 Hospital, will now revert to its original oeperations, officials said, adding that cleaning and sanitising of different super-specialty wards will be taken up.

8.00 am

COVID-19 vaccines must have at least 50% efficacy, says Drug Controller

A potential COVID-19 vaccine ought to confer at least 50% protection and be able to either prevent infection or disease — but not necessarily both — according to draft guidelines issued by the Central Drugs and Standards Control Organisation, the apex regulator of drug and vaccine trials.

7.00 am | Kerala

Children form 8.9% of COVID cases in Kochi

A girl wears a protective mask amidst the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai on September 20, 2020.

A girl wears a protective mask amidst the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai on September 20, 2020.  
| Photo Credit:

Of the total number of active COVID-19 cases in the district, 8.9% or 300 patients, are children below the age of 10, going by data till Tuesday morning from the district information office.

“The exposure of children in this age group to the virus has been kept low since they are unlikely to go out, though they might contract it from family members in the age group of 20 to 50, in which the maximum number of cases are concentrated,” said Dr. N. K. Kuttappan, District Medical Officer.

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