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The southern state of Kerala today reported a rise in coronavirus cases as 45,449 new infections recorded in the past 24 hours, the health department data showed. With this, the daily tally remained over 45,000 for the second day in a row, while the total tally rose to 56,20,151. The state has been hit hard by the third Covid wave, prompting the authorities to implement stricter Covid restrictions.

Kerala’s active Covid cases stand at 2,64,638, while the state recorded 38 deaths and 27,961 recoveries today, the data showed.

On Saturday, Kerala had reported as many as 45,136 new cases. On Thursday, Kerala had logged 46,387 new Covid cases, the highest single-day spike since the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020.

As per the health department, 1,01,252 samples were tested in the last 24 hours and there were 2,64,638 active cases in the state. "Currently, only 3.5 per cent of the active COVID-19 patients are admitted to hospitals," it said in a release.

The Kerala government has instructed private hospitals in the state to set aside 50 per cent of beds for Covid patients. This comes in the backdrop of rising Covid cases in the southern state. The state has asked private hospitals to hand over details of daily admissions in the ICUs, use of ventilators and beds to the District Medical Officers.

Meanwhile, the state government said on Friday that 100 per cent of the targeted population above the age of 18 years have been given the first dose of vaccine and 83 per cent of the total population given both doses.

“Over five crore doses have been given to people belonging to various categories and it was significant to achieve this feat at a time when the pandemic is surging," said health minister Veena George.

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