In the wake of a spike in COVID-19 cases, Kerala government is conducting a mass testing on Friday and Saturday.

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Coronavirus COVID-19 Friday, April 16, 2021 - 19:14

In the highest single-day spike to be reported this year, Kerala reported 10,031 new COVID-19 cases on Friday. The test positivity rate (number of persons testing positive in a group) has also increased from 13.34% on Thursday to 14.8% on Friday, said a statement by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. Kozhikode and Ernakulam districts reported the highest number of COVID-19 in a single day — 1,560 and 1,391 respectively. This was followed by Malappuram (882), Kottayam (780), Thiruvananthapuram (750), Alappuzha (745), Thrissur (737), Kannur (673), Kasaragod (643), Palakkad (514), Kollam (454), Wayanad (348), Idukki (293) and Pathanamthitta (261).

With the state witnessing a spike in COVID-19 cases, the state government is conducting a mass COVID-19 testing campaign on Friday and Saturday. It aims to conduct at least 2.5 lakh tests in the two days. As part of this, over two lakh people will be tested over the two days. Those who actively participated in the recently held Kerala Assembly election, frontline workers, those coming into contact with numerous people like delivery executives, will be tested.

As per the statement from the Chief Minister, infection hasn't been reported in anyone who returned from the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil in the last 24 hours. These are the countries that had first reported the COVID-19 variants, which are believed to be highly transmissible. Recently, 113 passengers who returned from these countries had tested positive for novel coronavirus. Of this, the genetically-mutated virus was detected in 11 passengers, while 109 people tested negative.

A total of 67,775 samples were tested in the last 24 hours, in which the test positivity rate was at 14.8%. In total, Kerala has tested 1,40,81,632 samples so far. Of the deaths reported in the past few days in the state, 21 were confirmed to be due to COVID-19 on Friday. With this the total death toll has reached 4,878.

Among the people who were tested on Friday, 9,137people contracted the disease through contact transmission, while 221 people came from outside Kerala. The source of infection of 641 people has not been found.

Among those who tested positive for coronavirus onFriday include 32 health workers — 11 from Kannur, five from Kasaragod, three from Thiruvananthapuram, two each from Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Ernakulam and Wayand, and one from Palakkad.

The state had witnessed huge gatherings and rallies as part of the April 6 Assembly polls, with many instances where political leaders, party supporters and the public violated the COVID-19 protocols.

Meanwhile, over 48,97,000 beneficiaries have received the COVID-19 vaccines in Kerala. According to the Kerala Health Department, this amounts to 13.39% of the total population of Kerala.

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