With 10,23,836 samples tested on Friday, positivity for the day dropped to 6.8%, even as fresh cases continued to remain high at nearly 70,000 – in line with the trend during the week.
The week-wise average daily positivity rate – which was hovering in the range of 9.03% to 10.94% between July 8 to Aug 11 (nearly a month) – is signaling a downward trend during the last two weeks. The average daily positivity dropped to 7.7% during the week of August 12-18 and even in the current week so far, after average daily tests increased to over 8 lakh samples.
Despite the rise in testing, the cumulative positivity rate – indicating the trend of the total burden of the infection in the country so far – has been around 8.6% over last one week, whereas it has remained below 9% since August 11. While the number of tests by private labs has gone up, the proportion remains between 10-12% of total tests carried out. Of 1,511 labs, 983 are government.
As on Saturday, India had carried out the second largest number of tests (34.4 million) after US (74.7 million), inching ahead of Russia (33.8 million). China has conducted many more at 90 million tests but is not now a high case load country. However, with around 24,000 tests per million population, India is considerably behind US, Brazil and Russia, though its population is much larger. On another count, at 747 tests per day per million population, India is well above the WHO norm of 140.
While both government and private labs contributed to ramping up of testing in the country, testing at government facilities was proportionately higher and increased faster than that at private labs.