A man on a bicycle on a street in the old quarter of New Delhi on April 19, 2021, as the capital of India will impose a week-long lock from tonight, officials said as the metropolis struggles to contain a huge jump in Covid-19 cases of exhaustion of hospital beds and low oxygen supplies.
Sajad Hussein AFP | Getty Images
India transferred 20 million reported cases to Covid-1
357,229 new cases were reported over a 24-hour period, bringing the total to 20.28 million, according to the health ministry.
The first cases in India were discovered in late January last year, and the total amount in the country did not transfer 10 million infections until December, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. But the next 10 million cases were reported in just under five months, mostly in April.
So far, at least 222,408 people have died from the disease, but that number is probably lower than the actual death toll. The media reported that crematoria and cemeteries were buried with the bodies of those killed by Covid-19.
“The pandemic has already spread to small towns and villages and we are now quite worried about how much damage it will cause in those areas where health systems are underdeveloped to provide support when even some of the big “, K. Srinat Reddy, president of the Public Health Foundation of India, told CNBC’s Capital Link on Monday.
Some countries are entering a blockade
During the first wave last year, India imposed a strict national lock between late March and May, derailing the country’s growth trajectory and leaving millions without a source of income.
While the central government seems reluctant to impose a second blockade across the country, several countries have tightened restrictions in recent weeks, including local conclusions and curfews. This includes Maharashtra, which is the most affected country in India, Delhi, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Karnataka and others.
Some health experts suggest that India needs a national home stay order and a declaration of emergency medical care to meet current health care needs.
The Indian healthcare system has been crushed by the sharp rise in cases as it faces a shortage of hospital beds, oxygen supplies and medicines to treat patients.
The Reddy Public Health Foundation told CNBC that India needs a two-pronged approach to combating the second wave. First, efforts to vaccinate more than 1.3 billion people must continue.
India is facing at least a short-term shortage of vaccines and just over 2% of the population has received both doses. Since May, India has opened vaccinations for people aged 18 and over.
Second, India needs a “very strong” containment strategy to reduce proliferation.
“What we need to do immediately is reduce human-to-human transmission by ensuring that there are no large crowds,” Reddy said, adding that India should not allow more than four people to gather in public and places with a high degree of positivity should be introduced into a mode of complete detention.
He added that India needs to provide adequate social support for people recovering at home from milder symptoms.
How did India get here?
India’s second wave began some time in February, when cases began to rise again. Previously, the country reported an average of about 10,000 infections a day. In April there was a steep jump in the curve with almost 7 million registered cases.
The Indian government has been criticized for allowing large crowds to gather for religious festivals and election rallies earlier this year. These mass gatherings probably turned into super distributors.
Scientists say the jump in cases is also due in part to variants of the coronavirus currently circulating in India. This includes a local variant called B.1.617, which has multiple sublines with slightly different characteristic mutations.
Reddy explained that in its desire to get the economy back on track, India has ignored the looming threat of a second wave.
“I think that by the beginning of January, when the number of daily cases, the daily number of deaths and the levels of test positivity had fallen, the widespread impression was that we had stopped the pandemic forever,” he said, adding: “We have turned our backs on the virus. , but the virus did not turn its back on us. And now we pay the price. “