Second peak over, India gets ready for a possible third COVID wave

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    The first wave of COVID 19 hit India during the last week of March 2020, having peaked in the middle, it lasted until the March of 2021 when the second and the deadlier wave of COVID jolted India infecting more than 4 lac people everyday. However, June brought hope as the number of cases dropped below 1 lakh after a period of more than 2 months.

    As we are past the worst of second wave, talks have already begun about a very possible onset of the third wave which may hit India. NITI Aayog member VK Saraswat said that preparations should be completed to deal with the third wave of COVID-19, which may affect younger population. Saraswat said that India’s epidemiologists have given very clear indications that the third wave of Covid-19 is inevitable, and it is likely to start from September-October. Therefore the country should vaccinate more and more people. He said, “I think we have done reasonably well. We have managed the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic very well, as a result, Covid-19 numbers have come down significantly.

    AIIMS chief Dr. Guleria on Saturday warned that India could witness a third wave of coronavirus infections in the next 6-8 weeks if people do not adhere to Covid-appropriate behaviour. 

    He said that until a sizeable number of people are vaccinated, everyone must strictly follow Covid-appropriate behaviour such as wearing of masks and social distancing.

    “If Covid-appropriate behaviour is not followed, the third wave can happen in six to eight weeks. We need to work aggressively to prevent another large wave till vaccination kicks in,” Guleria told news agency PTI. So far, India has fully vaccinated only about 5% of its estimated 950 million eligible population, leaving many millions vulnerable to infections and deaths. The AIIMS chief also stressed on the need for stricter surveillance and area-specific lockdowns in case of a significant surge in cases.

    According to a snap survey by Reuters, a majority of the medical experts believe that India will witness the next Covid wave by October.

    The experts said that although the next wave is expected to be controlled in a better way than the latest outbreak, the pandemic will continue to remain a public health threat for at least another year.

    The outbreak of second wave was the result of the extreme carelessness of the government and the governed both of whom didn’t learn much from the first wave and did not take enough measures to tackle the disease in future. The continuation of Kumbh which proved to be the superspreader literally resulted in the second wave and was facilitated both by the government and the people who participated despite knowing that a pandemic exists in the country. If people do not carefully keep staying cautious without letting off their guard, the third wave would be inevitable and this pandemic would keep proving itself to be deadly time and again.

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