With the COVID-19 wreaking havoc in China and East Asian countries, Health Ministry sources have warned that India might witness an increase in cases in January, citing patterns that were observed during the previous waves in the country. However, officials say surge in deaths and hospitalisation is not likely.
“We have seen during the three previous waves that any surge reported in East Asian countries hits Europe in about 10 days, the Americas in another 10 days, and the Pacific island countries in another 10 days. The surge reaches India in 30 to 35 days. So, it is crucial that people stay cautious during the month of January,” Health ministry officials said.
In India, the covid cases continue to be low as 188 fresh infections were reported in 24 hours, while there has been a surge in global cases over the last six weeks.
Nealry 6,000 passengers were tested over last three days after the government re-introduced sampling of international travellers December 24 onward. As per officials, out of 6,000, 39 were found positive.
“There is a need to be cautious and be prepared, but there is no need to stop travel from any country. Implementation of Air Suvidha (the online portal of the government where travellers have to submit travel details and a negative RT-PCR test conducted at the boarding port within 72 hours of travel) is being considered from six countries – China, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Singapore and Hong Kong – next week onward… Masks will also not be made mandatory, but we will urge people to wear it rather than fine them,” a senior official said.
ALSO READ: Is nasal vaccine recommended after precaution dose? Here’s what Covid task force chief says