India could see third wave in 6-8 weeks if Covid-appropriate behaviour not followed: AIIMS chief Randeep Guleria

June 19,2021 06:06 PM


As many states ease Covid-related restrictions, AIIMS director Randeep Guleria said Covid-appropriate behaviour needs to be followed aggressively until a big chunk of population is vaccinated.

AIIMS director Randeep Guleria on Saturday said India could see a third wave of coronavirus in six to eight weeks if Covid-appropriate behaviour is not followed and crowding is not prevented.

As many states ease Covid-related restrictions, Guleria said there was a need for stricter surveillance and area-specific lockdowns in case of a significant surge. He said Covid-appropriate behaviour needs to be followed aggressively until a big chunk of the population is vaccinated.

"If Covid-appropriate behaviour is not followed, the third wave can happen in six to eight weeks. We need to work aggressively to prevent another large wave till vaccination kicks in," Guleria told PTI.

However, Guleria also said that a nationwide lockdown cannot be a solution to rein in the pandemic as it could impact economic activity. Instead, area-specific lockdown and containment measures should be implemented to control the surge in cases in an area where the positivity rate goes beyond 5 per cent, he added.

The AIIMS director also reiterated that till now, there is no evidence to suggest that children will be affected more in the next Covid-19 wave.

The Centre on Saturday urged the states undergoing unlock to follow the five-fold strategy to counter any surge in Covid-19 cases. The central communication comes after the easing of Covid-related lockdown norms has led to crowding in markets and other places in different states.

The five-fold strategy includes Covid-appropriate behaviour, test-track-treat and vaccination to prevent the spread of the disease.

In a communication to all states and Union Territories (UTs), Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla also said that vaccination against Covid-19, in the present scenario, is critical to break the chain of transmission. Therefore, all state and UT governments should step up the pace of vaccination to cover maximum number of people in an expeditious manner.

When could third Covid-19 wave strike India?


Epidemiologists have indicated that a third wave of coronavirus is "inevitable".

India faced a brutal second wave of coronavirus in April-May where a massive number of people lost their lives, mainly due to shortage of beds and medical oxygen.

However, as the number of daily virus cases have come down, many states have partially unlocked their economic activities.

On Saturday, India's tally of active Covid-19 cases stood at 7,60,019, the lowest in 74 days. The death toll climbed to 3,85,137 with 1,647 fresh fatalities, while the national Covid-19 recovery rate has improved to 96.16 per cent.

AIIMS    guleria    Randeep    india    covid19    thirdwave