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India’s Covid Response Saved Over 1 Lakh Lives: Economic Study | India News


NEW DELHI: India’s response to the pandemic, focused on saving lives and livelihoods, restricted the spread of Covid-19 by 37 lakh of cases and saved more than 1 lakh of lives, according to the 2020-21 Economic Study.
The preliminary budget document presented in Parliament on Friday noted that, in the absence of a potent cure, the preventive vaccine; interaction of network structures in densely populated areas, and a high fatality rate (CFR), India strategically weighed the costs and opportunities.
The limits of scientific knowledge of the disease, the lack of good data on the mode of spread and the potency of the virus made it difficult to model the likely impact of different policy options in a reliable and timely manner.
To compound the uncertainty, India was estimated to have 30 million cases and several thousand deaths by the end of May 2020, he noted.
India imposed a strict lockdown from March 25 to May 31, 2020 to control the spread of the virus.
“By estimating the natural number of cases and deaths expected in countries based on their population, population density, demographics, tests performed, and health infrastructure, we compare these estimates with actual numbers to show that India restricted the spread of Covid-19 in 37 lakhs of cases and saved more than 1 lakh of lives, “he said.
The 40-day lockdown period, he said, was used to expand the medical and paramedical infrastructure needed for active surveillance, expanded testing, contact tracing, isolation and case management, and educating citizens about the social distancing and masks.
The lockdown provided the time needed to put the fundamentals of the ‘5T’ strategy into practice: test, track, trace, treatment and technology, according to the survey.
As a first step toward early identification, rapid isolation and effective treatment, more stringent testing was recognized as the effective strategy to limit the spread of infection, he said.
At the start of the pandemic in January 2020, India conducted fewer than 100 Covid-19 tests per day in a single laboratory. However, within a year, 10 lakhs of tests were being performed per day in 2,305 laboratories.
The country reached a cumulative test of more than 17 crore in January 2021.
The sharp decrease in the number of days to add the next 1 crore cumulative tests shows the dedicated efforts to expand the testing infrastructure. The necessary resources for personal protective equipment (PPE), masks and disinfectants also expanded at a rapid rate, he said.

Times of India