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No New Closures Recommended Locally: Government Appointed Panel on Covid-19 | India News

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NEW DELHI: No new closures should be imposed at the district or state level to contain the spread of Covid-19 unless there is an imminent danger that healthcare facilities will be overwhelmed, according to a government-appointed committee chaired by the Professor at IIT Hyderabad M Vidyasagar.
The committee has also stated that if all protocols are followed, the pandemic can be brought under control early next year with minimal active symptomatic infections by the end of February.
The 10-member panel that conducted a study on “Progression of the Covid-19 Pandemic in India: Forecast and Impacts of the Lockdown” has noted that without the lockdown, the pandemic would have hit India very strongly with a maximum load of more than Rs 1.40 crore. cases arriving in June.
The committee has developed an evidence-based mathematical model for the progression of Covid-19. The ‘super model’ at the national level is based on several parameters, such as the time of closure, alternative closure scenarios, the impact of migrant workers returning home, and the future course of the pandemic, including the impact of not following through. security protocols.
“If we all follow these protocols, the pandemic can be brought under control early next year with minimal active symptomatic infections by the end of February. We do not yet know the specific climate disturbances of this pandemic (in general, viruses tend to be more active in a colder environment) and the effects of possible future mutations in the virus. Therefore, existing personal safety protocols must continue in their entirety. Otherwise, we will see a sharp increase in infections. They should not be imposed new closures in one district and across the state, unless there is an imminent danger that healthcare facilities will be overwhelmed, “Vidyasagar said.
The committee, which includes IIT and IISc professors as well as scientists, said that upcoming festival and winter seasons may increase susceptibility to infection, but that all activities can be resumed as long as proper safety protocols are followed.
He also noted that the imposition of an early and full shutdown carried the peak of cases into the future and also reduced the maximum load on the system.
“Without lockdown, the pandemic would have hit India very hard, with a peak load of more than 140 lakh of cases arriving in June. Given our lack of preparedness at the time, the healthcare system would have been overwhelmed, which would have caused many additional deaths. India waited until May to impose the blockade, the peak load of active cases would have been around 50 lakhs in June, “the panel report said.
“Actually, the peak of active cases occurred in late September at around 10 lakh. At that time, we were much better equipped to handle the pandemic in terms of diagnostics and vital equipment inventories. Without a lockdown, the number of deaths in India have overwhelmed the system in a very short period of time, eventually exceeding 26 lakh deaths, “he added.
Based on the time profiles of the analyzes conducted for Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, the committee concluded that the impact of labor migration on the total number of infections in these states was minimal.
The committee also claimed that the imposition of various safety protocols, such as the wearing of masks and social distancing, along with a comprehensive lockdown, have allowed India to perform better than many other countries.
“India has one sixth of the world’s population (one fifth without China) and one sixth of the reported cases. Yet India accounts for only 10% of the world’s deaths and its fatality rate less than 2% it is among the lowest in the world, “he said.
The committee has recommended that existing personal safety protocols should continue in full measure, otherwise the country will see a sharp increase in infections.
“Avoiding congestion, especially in enclosed spaces, and special care for those over 65 and children is even more significant. Staff with comorbidities must be more cautious,” he said.
The Department of Science and Technology had in June formed a committee made up of eminent scientists and academics to develop a national supermodel for the progression of Covid-19.
The committee’s mandate was to create an evidence-based mathematical model for the pandemic after taking input from various groups working on the domain in the country and using it to analyze past events and future trajectories of the pandemic.

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