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Covid cases on the rise but health experts assuage worries

Health officials said the cases will begin to subside in a couple of weeks but experts opine that using masks cannot hurt
Last Updated : 13 April 2023, 08:51 IST
Last Updated : 13 April 2023, 08:51 IST

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There have been growing concerns across India with Covid-19 increasing again after a lull of months, but health officials say that this is not a worrying trend.

Government officials told The Times of India that Covid-19 cases will continue to rise for 10-12 days and will start falling after that. They added that hospitalisation, despite rising cases, has remained low and will continue to be so. However, experts have suggested the use of masks again.

Even as India reported over 10,000 coronavirus cases on Thursday, the highest in eight months, officials told TOI that the virus has now reached the endemic stage. When a virus is endemic, it means that it is consistently present but localised in a region, making it much easier to predict and manage the spread of infection.

Endemic viruses also generate many variants. For instance, Omicron, which was detected first in 2021, has over 1,000 sub-lineages.

"Masks are never a bad idea, especially in crowded and poorly ventilated places. I would use a mask in Delhi Metro for example," Anurag Agrawal, chair of the World Health Organization's technical advisory group on virus evolution, told The Economic Times. "On the other hand, I wouldn't use it in my private car with people I am anyway exposed to. So, no mandate but recommendation for smart use," he said.

India reported cases under 200 till January, but the numbers have shot up in the past couple of weeks. The government conducted mock drills last week to review the state of preparedness, should the increase in cases become significant again.

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Published 13 April 2023, 06:07 IST

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