Record testing deliver record spike but lower positivity rate

SAGAR CHHETRI

Gangtok, 27 May: Sikkim recorded its highest single-day spike in Covid cases with 408 new cases of

novel coronavirus being detected in the last 24 hours. The record spike was on the back of record testing when Sikkim screened nearly 60% more samples than it has done even on its most busy testing days thus far. A staggering 1,495 samples were screened in 24 hours to return 408 positive samples. Sikkim has averaged between 800-850 tests per day and has only in rare occasion gone past 900. What

should also help calm nerves a bit is the indication that a bulk of the new cases have been detected

in clusters, hence will be easier to contain, and are not spread out, which makes contact tracing and containment more difficult. While the numbers are high and still worrying, most of the cases continue to asymptomatic and the Test Positivity Rate which had hovered in the mid-30% for the past week, has also slipped to sub-30 level and registers at 27% today. Sikkim also lost one more life to Covid over the

same 24 hours, when a Covid patient passed away at Central Referral Hospital here. Sikkim has now lost 240 lives to the virus. On the other hand, the number of recovered cases in Sikkim crossed the

10,000-mark today and stands at 10,158 with the discharge of 225 more formerly Covid-positive people from home isolation on Wednesday. The number of active Covidcases has also increased to 3,604 in the

State, of whom 24 are currently in ICU facilities [13 in STNM hospital and 11 in CRH, Tadong]. Sikkim’s tally of the confirmed cases of COVID-19 has now reached 14,214. Out of the 408 new cases, 216 were registered in East District, 97 in West District, 75 in South District and 20 in North District. A total of 296 samples returned positive for COVID-19 in RT-PCR testing of 763 samples, while 110 persons were

found COVID-19 positive in rapid antigen testing of 721 samples and two more cases were detected

in TruNat testing of 11 samples.