India will see peak of Covid cases in June-July: AIIMS director

All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) Director Randeep Guleria on Thursday said that India might witness the peak of Covid-19 cases in June or July. “The answer of when will be the peak of cases of Covid-19 in India depends upon modelling data. National and international both experts are analysing the data. Most of them have guessed that India will most likely see the peak in June or July,” he said. Guleria said that earlier it was analysed that the peak would be in May but due to extended lockdown the peak has also been extended. “It is a dynamic process that depends upon various factors. It is a long-lasting battle. Cases will come even after the peak is passed. People’s lifestyle in terms of travelling and socialising will change,” he reminded.

The AIIMS director, however, added that if aggressive efforts are made with concerted focus on Covid-19 hotspots areas and people understand their responsibility, then the positive cases will slowly come down and a peak in cases might not come. “If we see our situation today and the situation that were there six weeks or two months ago, our rate of rise in not that much as compared to other countries. Although cases are increasing, their doubling time is not that much,” he said. He emphasises that the cases have increased because the authorities are doing more testing. “In the beginning, we are only doing 4,000-5,000 tests. Now we are doing more than 80,000-90,000 tests daily. If more tests will be done, then there will be more cases and if we see their ratio then it is not big, it is the same which was earlier. Therefore, the positivity rate is same (which was earlier),” he added.

Dr Guleria said that India might escape the Covid-19 peak. “For this, everybody’s participation is necessary because the chain of spread can be contained if everybody understands their responsibilities like social distancing and hand washing so that the virus does not spread further,” he added. He said it is important to understand that when the lockdown is lifted, the citizens understand their responsibility. “If we will be able to do all this, then the peak might not come and slowly the cases will come down. But if we will not do this, then cases will increase and it will put a strain on health infrastructure,” he said. He also mentioned people have to carry on with wearing masks, social distancing, hand washing and not visit crowded areas for a long time.

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