Covid-19 third wave may hit India in 6-8 weeks; warns AIIMS chief

Many states are easing curbs on strict restrictions and allowing to open markets and malls shortly after going through the devastating 2nd wave of COVID-19 pandemic.

People are flouting the COVID norms when the threat of a possible third wave is looming over our head.

According to NDTV reports, AIIMS chief Dr Randeep Guleria has said that a third Covid wave in India is “inevitable” and it may hit the country in the next six to eight weeks, as several states are easing curbs on public movement after weeks of strict restrictions.

He stated that the main challenge the country is facing is vaccinating a huge population and the decision to increase dose gaps for Covishield recipients “may not be a bad” approach to provide protection to more people.

In the fight against covid, India needs to develop a new frontier to further study the mutation of the virus, Dr Guleria has told NDTV while talking about the new Delta-plus variant which has evolved from the highly transmissible Delta COVID-19 variant.

The new variant is triggering new concerns about monoclonal antibody therapy.

In his statement, he said that “As we have started unlocking, there is again a lack of Covid-appropriate behaviour. We don’t seem to have learnt from what happened between the first and the second wave. Again crowds are building up… people are gathering. It will take some time for the number of cases to start rising at the national level. But it could happen within the next six to eight weeks… may be a little longer.”

He also added that it all depends on how we go ahead in terms of Covid-appropriate behaviour and preventing crowds.

Nearly, 5 per cent of the country’s population has so far been vaccinated with two doses. The government aims to vaccinate 108 crore of over 130 crore people in the country by the end of this year.

As per the statement of the AIIMS chief, a new wave can usually take up to three months or spread in much lesser time depending on different factors.

We also need to maintain more surveillance and Covid-appropriate behaviour to curb the spread of the new virus.

He stressed that until all of us are vaccinated, we are still vulnerable to the virus in the coming months. He also advised to impose mini-lockdown in any part of the country which registers a rise in positivity rate beyond 5 per cent.

Dr Guleria has told NDTV that we need strict surveillance in hotspots as the virus will continue to mutate and spread.

He stressed that “testing, tracking, and treating” should be the focus in the hotspots.

He also warned that the Delta variant is more infectious and it may spread more rapidly in the coming days.

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