Prepare for new waves of the pandemic, says govt’s scientific advisor


The third phase of the pandemic is inevitable provided the high level of circulating virus and while the time scale is difficult to foretell we will have to prepare for the new waves, principal scientific advisor K Vijayraghavan said on Wednesday as the country is still battling the devastating second wave.

“Preceding infections and vaccines will cause adaptive pressure on the virus for new changes and we will have to be prepared scientifically,” Vijayraghavan said. He also said that it used to be trashcan wrenching to see what used to be happening.

He said that the variants are just one of the crucial factors that have contributed to the second one wave. “Immunity could have kept new infections low in the first wave but those uninfected may have been large. As cautionary steps decreased, new opportunities for the spread increased.”

According to the findings of the India’s Sars-Cov-2 genomic consortium the B1.1.7 lineage of SARS CoV-2 or the United Kingdom variant is declining in proportion across the country in the final one and a half months.

The double variant classified as the “B.1.617” variant has been found in Maharashtra and may be connected to the surge in some states in the final one and a half months.

The principal scientific advisor said that the variants which increase transmission are likely to plateau but those which show immune evasive variants will have an effect on disease severity. “Our scientists are prepared to maintain that. We need to anticipate these changes from a scientific perspective…Variants do not alter the message,” he said.

A phase three is inevitable, provided the higher levels of circulating virus but it isn’t lucid on what time scale this phase three will arise. We will have to prepare for new waves: K VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Advisor to Centre

— ANI (@ANI) May 5, 2021
On if India needs to enter a national lockdown, the government said that detailed guidelines have been provided to the states to execute night curfews and depending upon the positivity rate impose restrictions on movement and near public spaces. V K Paul, member-health, Niti Aayog then again said, “The states will have to make a careful analysis. We have provided very balanced advisories. Whether anything more is required, those options are all the time being discussed…those decisions whether required will be taken.”

India has reported 3,780 covid deaths in a unmarried day, the highest ever so far on Wednesday. While health ministry data showed that 12 states are showing early signs of decline in the day by day number of cases, including Maharashtra and Delhi. The ministry did not then again give any comparison with the complete number of tests being conducted in these states. Cases then again are increasing north-eastern states.

So far over 671,000 people in the age group 18-44 have received their first dose of the Covid vaccine. A complete of 160 million doses have so far been administered.

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