'Cases in rural areas a bad sign': IMA chairman claims COVID-19 community spread has begun in India

'Every day the number of cases is increasing by more than around 30,000. This is really a bad situation,' said IMA chairman Dr VK Monga

Asian News International July 19, 2020 09:34:50 IST
'Cases in rural areas a bad sign': IMA chairman claims COVID-19 community spread has begun in India

New Delhi: With one million people getting affected by COVID-19 , the Indian Medical Association (IMA) is of the view that community spread has started and the situation is pretty bad.

While speaking to ANI, Dr VK Monga, the Chairman of IMA Hospital Board of India said, “This is now an exponential growth. Every day the number of cases is increasing by more than around 30,000. This is really a bad situation for the country. There are so many factors connected with it but overall this is now spreading to rural areas. This is a bad sign. It now shows a community spread.”

According to the latest update by the Union Health Ministry, the total confirmed cases reached 10,38,716. There are 3,58,629 active cases and 6,53,751 cured/discharged/migrated. A total of 26,273 deaths have been registered to date.

Dr Monga further said, “Cases are penetrating down into towns and villages where it will be very difficult to control the situation. In Delhi, we were able to contain it, but what about interior parts of the country in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Goa, Madhya Pradesh (which may be the new hotspots)?”

“All these issues are very important and the state governments should take full care and seek the help of the Central government to control the situation,” Monga said.

As many as 1,34,33,742 samples have been tested for COVID-19 till 17 July. Of these 3,61,024 samples were tested on Friday, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said.

ICMR is ramping up testing facilities regularly. At present, 885 government laboratories and 368 private laboratory chains are conducting COVID-19 tests across the country.

“This is a viral disease that spreads very fast. To contain the disease there are only two options. Firstly, 70 percent population contracts the disease and gets immune, and other is getting an immunisation,” stated Monga.

Vaccination, being the greatest hope to contain COVID-19 , India’s two indigenous vaccine makers would be starting human trials soon.

“There has to be phases of trials then human trial, then efficacy and side effects. Also, importantly it has to be seen how long this immunity will last because most of the patients are unable to go beyond three months of immunity,” said Dr Monga.

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