COVID-19 expected to become endemic in 6 months; new variant can’t alone bring third wave: NCDC chief

National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Director Sujeet Singh has said that COVID-19 will be part of everyday life in the next six months. The top expert also noted that a new variant of coronavirus can’t alone bring the third wave.

Speaking exclusively to NDTV, the NCDC director said that the COVID pandemic has defied most of the predictions but in the next six months, India will approach endemic status.

Dr Singh stressed that the coronavirus disease will stay but the disease will be easier to handle.

The NCDC chief asserted that if the mortality and morbidity is under control, then the disease can be managed.

He, however, expressed concern over the upcoming festivals season which is expected to draw huge crowds at markets across the country.

“Just a new variant cannot cause the third wave. The factor will be a mix of behaviour and antibodies. There is some worry because of the festival season,” Dr Singh was quoted by the news channel.

The NCDC director emphasised on vaccination, saying jabs remain the biggest protection against the deadly contagious virus.

“75 crore people have been vaccinated. If vaccine effectiveness is 70 per cent, then around 50 crore people in India have got immunity. A single dose gives 30-31% immunity. So the 30 crore people, who have received a single dose, are also immunised,” he told the channel.

INSACOG has confirmed that India is yet to report see Mu and C.1.2, the two new variants of SARS-CoV2.

“Neither Mu, nor C.1.2 are seen in India so far. Existing recommendations on sequencing of positive samples from international travellers may be more strongly implemented. Monitoring and evaluation of further data appears to be adequate at this time,” the INSACOG said in its bulletin on September 10.


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