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India Coronavirus Dispatch: Delhi runs short of space to bury its dead

Why Chandigarh students are shifting to govt schools, a peek into Delhi's post-Covid clinic, findings of Mumbai's second sero survey--news on how the country is coping with the pandemic

Coronavirus | Coronavirus Tests | Lockdown

Shreegireesh Jalihal  |  New Delhi 

Coronavirus, covid, tests
According to a new study, part of the virus that causes Covid-19 could be used to help relieve pain

Students shift to govt schools: Nearly 54 per cent of the students who sought admissions in Chandigarh’s government schools are those who have shifted from private schools. The UT’s education department said that this shift was due to financial crunch faced by the parents of students attending private schools post-pandemic. The admissions to the government schools took place in August and September this year through online mode. This is just another major change that school authorities are now dealing with since the pandemic hit. Private schools have hiked their fees since the Covid crisis began to be able to pay staff salaries and install hand sanitising dispensers and so on. Since most of the classes will be held online, parents decided to shift their children to govt schools. Read more here

Delhi’s post-Covid clinic: Started in August, Delhi’s post-Covid clinic has so far seen 275 patients who came in with complications after recovering from the disease. The clinic has analysed some of the initial trends and found that almost 30 per cent of the patients so far are availing neuropsychiatric treatment. Patients from all age groups are visiting the clinic. The doctors got a sense of what to expect early on by monitoring responses on a WhatsApp group comprising recovered Covid patients. Those belonging to younger age groups are complaining of neuropsychiatric issues like hyperventilation, sleeplessness, etc, and the elderly are raising issues of extreme weakness, breathlessness and other respiratory problems. The clinic offers services such as a counselling centre, sample collection area, yoga and physiotherapy. Read more here

In Numbers

Mumbai’s sero-survey: According to the findings of Mumbai’s second sero-survey, people in the 41-60 age group were most exposed to the in both slums and non-slum areas. The findings show that of the 1,060 people aged 41-60 years surveyed in slums, 50.3 per cent showed the presence of antibodies against Covid-19, and of 964 people in same age bracket surveyed in non-slums, 18.6 per cent tested positive. The primary reason for the high prevalence of antibodies in this age bracket is believed to be the fact that this is a working group and therefore likely to be more exposed to the virus. Compared to this age group, those aged above 60 are least exposed and most protected. Just 13.2 per cent of those belonging to this age group in non-slum areas showed prevalence of antibodies. In contrast, 48.2 per cent of those aged above 60 surveyed in slums had antibodies. Read more here

Long Read

Delhi’s burial space: Delhi has always faced a shortage of burial space for the dead. The pandemic has just made it a lot worse. A pre-pandemic report, for example, showed that over 30 per cent of Delhi’s Muslim graveyards within the now vast city limits suffer from encroachment. Over the years, an expanding city and its businesses have taken over cemetery spaces. The fact that alarm bells over the acute shortage of space for the dead were ringing a year or two before Covid hit is a major cause of concern. Given this context, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that in June the apex court reprimanded Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Hospital’s egregious treatment of both the dead and the living, following reports of dead bodies and patients sharing space. Read more here

Understanding Covid-19

as pain relief? According to a new study, part of the virus that causes Covid-19 could be used to help relieve pain. This happens by by blocking the body’s pain pathway at a cellular level. Experts believe this finding, initially observed in rats, could pave the way for new pain treatments in the future. However, what specific types of pain could be relieved is still unknown. The leading expert on the study, Rajesh Khanna, has said that injury-induced pain can be reversed by the virus. More crucially, this finding can explain why many of those infected by the virus report no symptoms despite being capable of spreading the disease. But why some others feel pain after infection is yet to be studied. Read more here

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First Published: Wed, October 07 2020. 15:43 IST