The total number of coronavirus cases has jumped up to 25,57,917 across the globe and the fatal virus has claimed 1,77,688 lives. In India alone, the number of active cases has surged up to 15,474 and 640 people have lost their lives due to COVID-19. According to media, however, the total number of cases is about to touch the 20,000 mark. While states like Kerala have managed to flatten the curve, it is perhaps too soon to think that the situation is getting better.
World Health Organisation (WHO) officials and findings by researchers in France have suggested that the sweeping shutdowns across the globe have absorbed just the first wave of coronavirus infections. WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has warned, "The worst is yet ahead of us. Early data suggests that a relatively small percentage of the population may have been infected, even in heavily affected areas. These estimates are based on the number of people who have contracted and also happen to have recovered from the virus.
The research has been uploaded on the French open access journal HAL. "By May 11, when interventions are scheduled to be eased, we project 3.7 million people, 5.7% of the population, will have been infected," say the authors in the report. Population immunity also appears insufficient to be able to avoid a second wave if all control measures are released at the end of the lockdown.
The researches have put the case of France in perspective and tried to explain how the country seems to have flattened the curve. "National daily ICU admissions have gone from 700 at the end of March to 220 on the 14th of April. If current trends continue, by the 11th of May, we project between 10 and 45 daily ICU admissions in France," say researchers.
However, upon drawing a comparison with India, it is important to consider that a similar trend like France is hard to observe in our country. Why? This is because India is a population of 1.36 billion and our country has one doctor for every 1,457 people as opposed to France that has 3.2 doctors for every 1,000 people. Therefore, there's no denying why continued lockdown is our best bet to fight the virus since easing the restrictions in some parts of the world has already sparked a new wave of infections.
Meanwhile, there are also reports of coronavirus likely to be at its peak in India during the first two weeks of May. We must remain strong and determined in our fight against the pandemic as the number of cases could range anywhere between 30,000 to 2,86,000 during that period across the country. Let's stay indoors, keep our surroundings clean, take precautions and wash our hands multiple times a day. We are in this together.