New Delhi [India], January 25 (ANI): With India reporting 2,55,874 new COVID cases (50,190 less than yesterday), and 614 deaths in the last 24 hours, health experts cautioned that since most of the population lives in rural India, the country is yet to see the peak in the current wave.
Omicron, the latest Variant of Concern was first detected in South Africa. It is causing a milder disease but has 70 times more transmissibility leading to a high percentage of the percentage rate.
However, hospitalization has been far less in the current variant than in the second wave, but patients with comorbidities are still requiring hospital admissions and ICU beds.
Speaking to ANI, Dr Suranjit Chatterjee, senior consultant, Internal Medicine, Apollo Hospitals said, "The metropolitans have already seen a peak and currently the graph is showing a steady downward trend. But the tier-II and tier-III cities and the villages have reported less number of cases. India as a country might see a peak in one or two weeks."
"Omicron in India has been mild so far. People are getting infected fast and are also recovering at a much faster pace. But we should not lower our guards at all," he added.
Another expert Dr DS Rana is of the view that with milder infection and faster recovery, people are getting reluctant for the test. Further, many opt for rapid antigen self-test kits. These lead to dropping in the daily number of cases.
Dr Rana, chairman, Sir Gangaram Hospital, Delhi told ANI, "This happened during delta variant also when cases started decreasing in cities it showed an upward trend in villages. COVID is primarily a respiratory disease and the contagiousness depends on the density of the population."
He added, "Unlike the time of delta wave, many opted to stay back in cities rather than going back to their villages. But despite everything, due to its transmissibility rural population will definitely see a rise in cases in the coming weeks. However whether it will be recorded or not, largely depends on how tests are being done."
Many of the top health experts emphasised on accelerating genome sequencing for COVID cases.
According to the Ministry of Health and family welfare, with 2,55,874 new COVID cases recorded in the last 24 hours in the country, the current positivity rate remained at 15.52 per cent on Tuesday.
India's active caseload stands at 22,36,842 on Tuesday. (ANI)