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What is driving the second wave of Covid 19 in India?

  Apr 17, 2021

What is driving the second wave of Covid 19 in India?

Q. What is the news?

Q. What are the reasons for this surge?

Experts point out Three important factors — the virus, the host, and the environment — constituting the epidemiological triad for the surge in cases in many States. 

1. Virus – New variants of concern might be in circulation, which is probably more infectious, and some can be an immune escape as well. 

2. The Host - Factors include waning antibodies, not following COVID-19 appropriate behaviour and incomplete vaccination.

3. Environment- Environmental factors include super-spreader events and poor compliance with preventive measures. 

The misconception that vaccination prevents even infection might also be contributing to rising cases.

Q. What might be the role of Indian variants?

There is not enough evidence yet about the Indian variants to say whether they are more transmissible or more virulent, at this stage.

Variants, both imported and home-grown, are increasingly seen but have so far not been linked epidemiologically to the surge. It is possible that may be the case, but there is no data to either support or negate that possibility. 

Q. What should be done to tackle this?

Systematic study needed

Undertaking studies to understand infectiousness of the double mutant variant becomes all the more important as noncompliance to COVID-19-appropriate behaviour is uniformly poor across India. Yet, the surge in cases is seen only in 19 States, and mainly in about a dozen States.