Asia Today: India cases approach 7 million amid slower pace
NEW DELHI (AP) - India's confirmed coronavirus cases are approaching 7 million with an additional 73,272 reported in the past 24 hours.
The Ministry of Health reported 926 additional deaths on Saturday, bringing the total to 107,416 deaths. The deaths remained below 1,000 for the seventh straight day.
In India, the coronavirus has been spreading more slowly since mid-September when daily infections hit a record of 97,894 cases. So far this month, an average of more than 70,000 cases are being treated each day, while the recovery rate has exceeded 85%.
However, health experts have warned that during major festivals later this month and November, communities have the potential for the virus to spread.
"We have to work aggressively to make sure coronavirus cases don't increase dramatically during the winter months and the Christmas season," said Dr. Randeep Guleria, a government health expert.
Experts say India's fragile health system has been strengthening in the past few months but could still be overwhelmed by an exponential increase in cases.
Consumer activity is gradually recovering and millions of factory workers who fled the cities when India imposed a two-month strict lockdown on March 25 are returning.
For other developments in the Asia Pacific region:
- The daily number of new coronavirus cases reported in Myanamar has exceeded 2,000 for the first time as the Southeast Asian nation struggles to control the spread of the disease. The 2,158 cases announced on Saturday amount to 26,064 since March. The total includes 598 deaths, 32 of which were announced on Saturday. Myanmar had only recorded 353 virus cases in early August, but an upswing later in the month in western Rakhine state quickly spread to other parts of the country. Myanmar leader, State Councilor Aung San Suu Kyi, said in a televised address on Friday night that the number of people being infected from people who do not show symptoms of the disease is now increasing. Suu Kyi noted that one of the drugs Myanmar uses to treat patients is remdesivir, which was also part of US President Donald Trump's treatment.
Follow AP's pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak
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