Amravati: Observing that peaking of coronavirus cases was a natural consequence, Andhra Pradesh Special Chief Secretary (Health) KS Jawahar Reddy on Saturday said their focus was now on reducing the mortality rate.
"We are almost into the peak of cases. Some districts like East Godavari, West Godavari, Kurnool, Anantapuramu and Guntur have entered the peak curve while some others are midway. This is a natural consequence," the Special Chief Secretary told a press conference, as the state registered 2.17 lakh coronavirus positive cases till Saturday.
He said saving lives was now the main focus, particularly in the critical COVID-19 cases.
"The case fatality rate is 0.89 per cent, which means it is under control. If the rate is around one per cent, it indicates we are clinically managing the cases well, according to the Centre and Niti Aayog guidelines," Jawahar Reddy pointed out.
In AP, 60-70 per cent of COVID-19 deaths were in the two high-risk categories: above 60 years of age, with or without comorbidities, and 40 years with comorbidities.
Rest of the fatalities were in the below 40-year age group, he said.
"It is really behaving differently in different people," Jawahar Reddy observed.
The Special Chief Secretary said a sero-prevalence survey was being conducted in Krishna, East Godavari, Anantapuramu and SPS Nellore districts that have a high coronavirus caseload.
Sero-prevalence refers to the frequency of individuals with antibody to a particular virus in a population.
"We will know, through the survey, the percentage of population already infected and how many (persons) developed antibodies.Then we have to change the strategy. If many had got infected and cured in a district, we need not worry much.If 25 per cent already got infected, we will be left with 75 per cent vulnerable population," he said.
He said 3,750 samples would be tested in each district and the survey would be completed in a week.
As numbers were rising, people should be more responsible, the Special CS said, adding public participation was the key in containing the spread of the pandemic.
"At this stage of the infection, we need to have renewed focus on our hygiene, physical distancing, wearing mask and staying away from crowded places. These are non-pharmaceutical public health measures, also called COVID-appropriate behavior. People should necessarily follow this at least for the next six months, till a vaccine is out," Jawahar Reddy added.