How the Covid-19 pandemic affected states
Two months after the outbreak in India in early May, Ladakh was by far the region with the highest testing rate with 8,294 samples tested per million residents. Delhi came in second, with around 2,500 tests per million, followed by Andhra Pradesh (1962). Manipur (149 tests per million), Mizoram (151) and West Bengal (171) were the states with the fewest tests. In terms of case fatality rate (CFR), in Meghalaya 8.3% of infected people were dying, the highest proportion in the country, followed by Madhya Pradesh (5.3%) and Gujarat (5.0%) . Among the states that had reported deaths, the fewest numbers were dying in Kerala (0.6%), Bihar (0.6%) and Odisha (0.7%).
Skip six months to early October, and states with a smaller population now dominate the evidence-per-million ranking. Ladakh was still at the top, and was followed by Arunachal Pradesh and Goa (Delhi was in fourth place with around 16,000 tests per million). Madhya Pradesh was now the state with the lowest test rate in the country (25,097), followed by West Bengal (33,758) and Nagaland (37,407).
Read also | Resuming life after the Covid-19 crash
At that time, most states had significantly improved their CFRs and the classification had changed significantly. Punjab was now seeing the highest proportion of cases ending in deaths: 3%. In Maharashtra (by a wide margin, the worst affected state in the country), 2.6% of cases were dying, while in Gujarat this number was 2.5%. States with smaller populations again performed better in saving lives, as only 0.1% of cases were dying in Daman & Diu, followed by 0.2% in Arunachal Pradesh and 0.3% in Nagaland.
At the end of December, Delhi had waged a blitzkrieg of tests until early November to stem the third wave in the capital. As a result, it is again among the regions with the best tests (428,000 tests per million) behind the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Madhya Pradesh (55,779) still has the worst test rate in the country, followed by Nagaland and Rajasthan.
Read also | The rise of data as antivirus
Meanwhile, Punjab and Maharashtra remain the states with the worst death rates, while low-population states (Daman & Diu, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh) continue to save the most lives.