Kerala is proving how good health infrastructure and an active government to monitor and act can minimise deaths due to COVID-19 despite huge number of infections.
So far, mortality due to the pandemic among the worst affected states is lowest in Kerala at 0.3 per cent (5,958 deaths). The southern state has the third highest COVID-19 infections in the country with 19.67 lakh cases, and still has only 22 per cent active cases (4.24 lakh people). Odisha is just behind Kerala in COVID-19 mortality with 0.4 per cent (2,215 deaths), out of 5.54 lakh cases so far and 16 per cent active cases, as per today's Union Health Ministry data.
Compared to this, the most infected Maharashtra, with 51.79 lakh total cases and active cases of 5.61 lakh people, has seen death of 1.5 per cent patients (77,191). The second highest infected Karnataka, with 20.13 lakh people and currently having the highest active case load in the country with 5.87 lakh patients, has so far witnessed deaths of 19,852 patients, 1 per cent of the total cases. Uttar Pradesh also has seen 1 per cent patients perish (16,043), out of its total 15.45 lakh cases so far.
While Delhi witnessed 1.5 per cent or 20,010 deaths so far, out of 13.48 lakh cases, Punjab has the highest mortality rate - 2.4 per cent or 10,918 deaths - out of 4.59 lakh COVID-19 cases. Chhattisgarh had 8.73 lakh cases so far, with 10,941 deaths (1.3 per cent); still the state has 1.21 lakh active cases. West Bengal has a mortality rate of 1.2 per cent (12,593) out of 10.32 lakh cases, with current active cases numbering about 1.27 lakh. Uttarkhand, which witnessed 2.56 lakh infections, currently has 30 per cent active cases (76,500). Death in the state is high at 1.6 per cent or 4,014 cases. Jharkhand also has a higher mortality rate of 1.4 per cent (4,085), out of 2.96 lakh cases.
Kerala, which has one of the best public and private healthcare infrastructure in the country, had got international appreciation on how it tackled the pandemic during the previous wave. In the ferocious second coming of the virus, the state has now gone into a full lockdown mode with strict measures. As done last year, the state has implemented grassroot level medical infrastructure in place, with ward-level committees monitoring and helping patients with food, logistics and medical assistance. After the Kerala High Court's intervention, the state had also capped private COVID-19 treatment costs.