Kerala reported 16,671 new COVID-19 cases and 120 deaths on Saturday, taking the infection count to 46,13,964 and the death toll to 24,248.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the state had tested 1,14,627 samples in the last 24 hours and there were 841 wards across 422 local self government bodies with a weekly infection population ratio above ten per cent.
"Currently, there are 1,65,154 active COVID-19 cases in the state of which only 12.2 per cent are admitted to the hospitals," Vijayan told the media.
The State health department said Ernakulam district recorded the highest number of fresh cases--2,500, followed by Thiruvananthapuram with 1,961 and Thrissur with 1,801 cases.
"Of those found infected today, 110 reached the state from outside while 15,794 contracted the disease from their contact. The source of infection of 692 is yet to be traced and 75 health workers are also among the infected," the health department said in a release.
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.
Meanwhile, 14,242 persons recuperated from the disease on Saturday, taking the total cured to 44,23,772. There are 4,73,920 persons under observation in the state of which 22,027 are in isolation wards of various hospitals.Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.