J Radhakrishnan said that following COVID-19 norms and adhering to the lockdown rules may help bring down the cases in Tamil Nadu.

Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J RadhakrishnanScreengrab/RedPix
Coronavirus Coronavirus Friday, May 21, 2021 - 11:22

COVID-19 cases in Tamil Nadu may peak by the end of May, Tamil Nadu Health Department principal secretary J Radhakrishnan told the media on Thursday. A number of states in India like Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Delhi have already reached their peak and Tamil Nadu is two weeks behind these states, the Health Secretary said. “Tamil Nadu has been recording 35,000 cases every day on an average. Maharashtra, Kerala, Karnataka and Delhi have already reached the peak. The population in Kerala and Karnataka is less than the population of Tamil Nadu and so the cases in Tamil Nadu may peak on May 29 or May 30, as Tamil Nadu is two weeks behind these states,” he said. 

J Radhakrishnan said that following COVID-19 norms and adhering to the lockdown rules may help bring down the cases in Tamil Nadu. "The lockdown has been imposed in Tamil Nadu to cut the virus chain spread. If other states have witnessed a decline in new COVID-19 infections, it is because people there offered their support to the government by staying indoors,” he said. On the rise in new infections, he said the impact of the total lock-down would be realised during the latter half of this month.

"The rate at which the infection was spreading, from 25,000 to 30,000 within a day, has reduced now. There are indications in some districts that the virus spread is declining but in some districts it is not," he said. In particular, Chennai and some districts have been 'static' in terms of new infections over the last few days, he said, asking people in districts like Coimbatore, Tiruppur, Erode, Tiruchirappalli, Tuticorin, Madurai to exercise caution due to the high number of cases there.

"People should utilise the lockdown to the fullest to break the virus spread chain. If a place has been declared as a containment zone, people should respect that by staying indoors," he said.

Tamil Nadu hit an all-time high of COVID-19 cases and deaths on Thursday, reporting 35,579 infections and 397 fatalities. Among those infected were nine returnees from various destinations, while a 13 year-old girl was one of those who succumbed to the virus.

The fresh numbers came just a day after the state touched the peak of 34,875 cases and 365 deaths. Discharges on Thursday numbered 25,368, taking the overall tally to 14,52,283,leaving 2,63,390 active infections.The new cases today took the total caseload to 17,34,804, while the toll touched 19,131, the health department said in a bulletin. Chennai topped in the number of cases, accounting for 6,073 infections, totalling 4,62,448 till date. The metropolis also leads in the number of fatalities with 6,105 deaths.

Among other districts, Coimbatore reported 3,335 cases, Chengalpet saw 2,092 new cases, Tiruvallur 1,791, Tiruppur 1,581, Erode 1,505, Tiruchirappalli 1,375 Madurai 1,269, Kanyakumari 1,096 and Tuticorin 1,004, Kancheepuram 858 and Cuddalore 854.

J Radhakrishnan also told the media that currently, the state has nine cases of 'black fungus' or Mucormycosis. The state will be declaring Mucormycosis as a notifiable disease. To study what measures need to be taken, a 10-member 'Mucormycosis Committee' comprising senior medical professionals has been formed, he added.

"Currently nine people are being treated for the disease, of which six are old cases and three, new ones. Seven of them are diabetic... all are stable," health secretary J Radhakrishnan told reporters. Pointing out that the black fungus was already in existence much before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, he said people with uncontrolled diabetes and consuming steroids and those in Intensive Care Units for a long time were more susceptible to the disease.

With PTI inputs