The health ministry, on March 29 said 106 new COVID-19 cases and six deaths were reported from six states in the last 24 hours.
Joint Secretary in the ministry, Lav Agarwal said till now, there are 979 confirmed coronavirus cases in the country, including 25 deaths.
Raman Gangakhedkar of the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) said till March 29, 34,931 tests were conducted for the contagion.
"Capacity utilisation in the ICMR network is around 30 per cent. We have increased the number of laboratories, 113 have been made functional and 47 private laboratories have been given the approval to conduct COVID-19 tests" he said.
Joint Secretary in the Home Ministry, - said employers must be instructed to give full wages to workers on the due date without any deduction for the closed-down period and landlords cannot charge rent for this period.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
She also said the workers cannot be forced to vacate the premises.
"The SPs and DMs will be held personally responsible for its strict implementation" Srivastava said, referring to the orders issued to stop the mass exodus of migrant workers.
She also said that the states were instructed to seal the borders.
Agarwal said the ongoing 21-day lock-down has resulted in some behavioral, mental health issues and NIMHANS has launched a toll-free number - 08046110007 - for consultation.
Asked to provide the number of patients presently on ventilator, he said that data was being monitored at the state level.