A third wave of COVID-19 cases is possibly to hit India by October. Although it will be better controlled than the most recent outbreak, the pandemic will still be a public health threat for at least another year.
The financial capital of India is currently combatting a second wave of the novel coronavirus. The Maharashtra state, of which Mumbai is the capital, can see the third wave of the coronavirus in the next two to four weeks.
Preparations Against the Third Wave
Health officials in the state have prompted authorities to ramp up preparations against the probable third wave, according to them on Friday. This is as lockdowns were eased less than a month following a surge that recorded thousands of fatalities.
India's second most populous state of Maharashtra lifted numerous curbs this week. Mumbai reopened movie theaters, malls, and gyms at 50 percent capacity, and freed offices from staff attendance limits.
The snap survey on June 3-17 of 40 doctors, healthcare specialists, virologists, scientists, professors, and epidemiologists from across the globe displayed a major rise in vaccinations will possibly provide some cover to a fresh outbreak. Of those who wanted a prediction, at least 85 percent of respondents, or 21 of 24, remarked the next wave will hit by October. These include three who forecast it as early as August and 12 in September.
States are welcoming unlocking and the coronavirus cases consistently declining. If a third wave of the pandemic hits India, its effect will largely be reliant on inoculation coverage, which scientists have underscored in their finding, reported Hindustan Times.
On Friday, India recorded 62,480 new COVID-19 infections. This totals the confirmed cases to 2,97,62,793. Meanwhile, the fatalities toll climbed to 3,83,490 with 1,587 new fatalities, which is the lowest in 61 days, according to the Union health ministry data.
More than 70% of experts, or 24 of 34, stated any new outbreak would be better mitigated compared with the current one, which has been much more devastating due to the lack of medicines, vaccines, hospital beds, and oxygen than the smaller initial surge in infections in 2020.
According to Dr. Randeep Guleria, director at All India Institute Of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), "It will be more controlled, as cases will be much less because more vaccinations would have been rolled out and there would be some degree of natural immunity from the second-wave," reported The Times of India.
The third wave in Maharashtra can arrive earlier than expected, according to a key experts body set up by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. The experts have remarked that the case count can begin rising early, going by the crowding that has been witnessed as the restrictions in parts of the state are being eased.
According to Dr. Rahul Pandit, member of Maharashtra Covid Task Force on the third wave, they need to be prepared if the third wave comes earlier than expected. He added they have to go by a number of mathematical models and then look around the globe and see what other waves have been like, reported NDTV.