COVID-19 third wave may not set in Telangana till December: Director of Public Health

Telangana Director of Public Health Dr G Srinivasa Rao.   | Photo Credit: NAGARA GOPAL

Two of the most asked questions these days is will COVID-19 third wave set in Telangana, and if so, when can it be expected. The State’s Director of Public Health Dr G Srinivasa Rao has estimated that the third wave might not set in till December.

However, this estimation is conditional. The senior health official said that the time period depends on whether people take precautions against COVID-19, and if they get vaccinated against it. While the onus now lies with the people, equal responsibility is on politicians. Though second wave has declined in the State, it is still active with around 600-650 new infections in a day.

People, Health Care Workers (HCW), and others have pointed out on multiple occasions in the recent past that people are congregating in large numbers for marriages, festival celebrations, political events, and at pubs. Scores of people were seen not masking up, or did not maintain physical distancing. All this points out that COVID-appropriate behaviour is not being maintained by everyone, which means one of the two conditions to prevent the third wave in not fulfilled.

Second condition

There are around 3.5 crore people in the State. Of them, 2.2 crore people, who are above 18 years, are eligible to get jab against COVID. The vaccination programme was rolled out on January 16 this year.

In the six-and-half-months, 51.3% (1.13 crore) of the 2.2 crore eligible beneficiaries were given at least one dose of the vaccine. And of the 1.13 crore, 36.41 lakh people took the second dose. One crore more people are yet to be vaccinated. The senior official said that new variants of coronavirus are seen when large section of people are not immunised, or do not have antibodies to fight the virus.

“No one knows how long the antibodies (in vaccinated and infected) last. Booster dose might be needed. This is one of the reasons we urge people to take precautions against COVID-19 despite getting vaccinated or infected, so that there is no spread,” Dr Srinivasa said, explaining the relation between precautions, new variants, and immunity.

The precautions have to be observed more so by people who are susceptible: those not infected with coronavirus, or did not get vaccinated yet. In other words, those who do not have immunity against the infectious disease come under the ‘susceptible’ category. Focal point of preventing the third wave is vaccination, and COVID-19 appropriate behaviour.

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Printable version | Sep 26, 2021 12:44:23 AM |

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