India may soon be heading towards endemic stage of Covid 19: Vaccine Scientist

Updated on Sep 22, 2021 04:06 AM IST  |  63K
   
India may soon be heading towards endemic stage of Covid 19: Vaccine Scientist
India may soon be heading towards endemic stage of Covid 19: Vaccine Scientist
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Chennai-based vaccinologist Dr Gangandeep Kang in a latest interview with PTI has explained what the Covid-19 stage in India will be looking like in the upcoming months. Speaking to the portal, Dr Kang said that India's third wave may not be as deadly as the second wave. She added that India will soon be heading towards the endemic stage. 

For the unversed, the endemic stage is when a population learns to live with a virus. This stage is starkly different from the epidemic stage when the virus overwhelms a population.

Comparing the second wave numbers to the likely numbers of third wave, Dr Kang said, "So will we be able to achieve within that quarter the same numbers and the same patterns that we saw in the second wave? That I think is unlikely. What we will see is local flare-ups that will be smaller and spread wider across the country. Now if that will collect to form a third wave, that may happen if we have a lot of behaviour change around festivals, but the scale is not going to be anything like what we saw before."

Further explaining about India's endemic stage, Dr Kang said, "When you have something that is not going to go away in the near future, it is heading towards endemicity. Right now, we are not looking at eradicating or eliminating SARS-CoV2, which means it has to become endemic." 

Dr Kang, who is also a professor at Christian Medical College, Vellore, added, "We have a lot of endemic diseases like influenza, but you can have a pandemic layered on top of an endemic disease. So for example, if you get a new variant that completely escapes the immune response, you could have a pandemic again but that would not mean that SARS-CoV2 is only a pandemic and has stopped being endemic. There is both, because one set of variant will be doing something while another would be doing something else." 

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