Huge difference in positivity rate among districts in Karnataka

While the number of positive cases reported in the State has been increasing, analysis by the State COVID-19 War Room shows that there is a huge difference in the positivity rate across different districts.

Bengaluru Urban, with 10.39%, recorded the highest positivity rate as on January 8, while Haveri reported the lowest on the same day with 0.2%. The average positivity rate of Karnataka on Saturday stood at 6.77%.

On Saturday, five districts reported a positivity rate over 5%. These districts are Bengaluru (Urban), Bengaluru (Rural), Shivamogga, Mandya and Mysuru district. Meanwhile, four districts recorded a positivity rate of less than 1% . These are Bagalkot, Gadag, Raichur and Haveri.

H.M. Prasanna, President of Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association (PHANA), however, said that the positivity rate in other districts too would increase shortly. “Many people have gone to their native places during the weekends due to the curfew and the trend will change by next week,” he predicted.

In some districts, there is a huge difference in Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT) positivity rate and RT-PCR positivity rate. For instance, in Ramanagaram, the RT-PCR positivity rate is 0.93%, while for RAT it is 12.32%. The overall positivity rate in this district is however 1.88%.

Munish Moudgil, who is in-charge of the State War Room, said that RAT is for symptomatic people and hence patients are more likely to be COVID positive when they undergo this test, while RT-PCR is done for both symptomatic and asymptomatic.

An official in the Department of Health and Family Welfare said that the RAT positivity rate could be higher as they have several false negative results.

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