Covid Wrap-up: '6L cases a day if vaccination sluggish'

Covid-19 Wrap-up: Study predicts 6 lakh cases a day if vaccinations sluggish

While the Delta variant led to the second wave of the pandemic earlier this year, the Delta Plus is expected to trigger the third wave

Representative image. Credit: Reuters Photo

In what has been an alarming development, Maharashtra reported 231 cases of the Delta Plus variant of Covid-19 in Mumbai and other places in the state. While the Delta variant led to the second wave of the pandemic earlier this year, the Delta Plus is expected to trigger the third wave.

While Delta Plus is troubling Maharashtra, breakthrough Covid-19 cases are mounting on to Kerala’s Covid-19 woes. A higher rate of breakthrough infections in some districts, including Kasargod, and shortage of syringes were affecting the state’s fight against the pandemic. The breakthrough infection rate was found to be higher than five per cent in Kasargod, Palakkad and Idukki districts.

Meanwhile, a study conducted by the National Institute of Disaster Management — which falls under the Ministry of Home Affairs — predicts a surge in cases as early as October. India may record an unprecedented 6,00,000 new infections a day if the country fails to boost the pace of vaccination and avert a third coronavirus wave, according to the study. This would surpass the peak of daily cases during the second wave and the world record.

However, for the first time since the start of the second wave, no new deaths or backlog deaths to Covid-19 were reported from Bengaluru Urban district in the state’s official Covid-19 bulletin on Monday.

However, by tabulating deaths on the day they happened, DH has found that the city has already recorded several zero-death days. Strikingly, the state Covid-19 bulletin has not declared any deaths in the city since August 20.

On the vaccination front, India's first and only mRNA vaccine against Covid-19 on Tuesday received regulatory approval for advanced clinical trials to examine its protective efficacy, raising the hopes of its availability for public use in a few months.

The indigenous vaccine uses the same messenger RNA-technology based platform that has been tested successfully by Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech to come out with the world’s two most successful vaccines with around 95 per cent efficacy against the Covid-19 disease. The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation approved the trials on the basis of recommendations by a Subject Expert Committee which perused the interim phase-1 data and found that the vaccine candidate was safe, tolerable and immunogenic.

In order to make the process of booking a slot for the Covid-19 vaccination hassle-free and reachable to a larger number of people, the Government of India has extended the service to WhatsApp. Now anyone can register for their Covid-19 vaccination via the MyGov chatbot on WhatsApp.

Meanwhile, Chief Scientist of the World Health Organisation Dr Soumya Swaminathan said that India may be entering some kind of stage of endemicity where there is a low or moderate level of transmission going on. The endemic stage is when a population learns to live with a virus. It is very different from the epidemic stage when the virus overwhelms a population. Here’s an explainer on endemicity.

In another study, researchers say that the world will likely see a pandemic similar to Covid-19 within the next 60 years, stressing the need to prioritise efforts to prevent and control them. The findings showed that the probability of a pandemic similar to the deadliest pandemic in modern history -- the Spanish flu, which killed more than 30 million people between 1918 and 1920 -- ranged from 0.3 per cent to 1.9 per cent per year over the time period studied.

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