Coronavirus: It’s too early to predict the end of the third wave, experts say

Even though COVID cases in Uttar Pradesh are on the decline, experts say it is still too early to predict when the third wave will end. They believe that safety protocols must be followed.

Experts say the possibility of a new, more serious variant cannot be ruled out in the future and people should continue to take precautions.

The first wave had affected around 81,000 people in Lucknow alone between March 2020 and January 2021 and claimed the lives of 1,157 patients.

The second wave triggered by the Delta and Delta Plus variants which lasted around 90 days infected 1.5 lakh people and 1,465 succumbed to the virus.

The third wave caused by the Omicron variant proved to be less dangerous. It started on December 22, 2021 and has so far infected 57,439 people and claimed the lives of 38 patients.

Unlike the very severe Delta variant which attacked the lungs, the Omicron variant largely affected the upper respiratory region. As a result, most patients had mild symptoms or remained asymptomatic.

Former head of the Department of Microbiology at the Institute of Medical Sciences, BHU, Professor Anil Kumar Gulati said, “The virus will continue to mutate as long as it circulates. The possibility of the emergence of a deadly variant of Covid-19 is highly unlikely, but we should wait until May before relaxing.”

Professor Vikram Singh, Superintendent of the Ram Manohar Lohia Institute of Medical Sciences, said: “Since almost everyone has taken doses of the vaccine, the new variant, if it emerges, will not be as virulent (lethal) as Delta. But we can’t be complacent, like we were after the first wave.”

Epidemiologist Dr Amit Singh, secretary of the Provincial Association of Medical Services, said: “Covid-19 will subside over time, but these three months are crucial.”

He said complacency after the first was a major factor responsible for the devastating second wave. In comparison, the precautions taken and the rapid vaccinations carried out after the second wave resulted in a much less severe third wave.

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