Herd immunity could be reason for 
less cases in densely populated areas: Expert

Maharashtra, on Sunday, reported 3,717 new infections and 70 deaths in the last 24 hours, pushing the respective tallies to 18,80,416 and 48,209 fatalities so far. The recovery rate of the state is constant at 93.44 per cent for the last three to four days. 3,083 patients have recovered and were discharged, increasing the count to 17,57,005.

Mumbai, meanwhile, recorded 606 new cases and 12 fatalities on Sunday, increasing the count to 2,90,629 and 10,981, correspondingly.

However, despite there being no signs of a surge in cases, as predicted by experts, the danger continues to lurk close as it may happen by January.

A comparison of the past two months showed that the state had clocked 1,44,934 infections in the first 12 days of October. In November, the figure reduced to 55,587. This month, it has further reduced to 55,053 in the corresponding period. The average per day cases this month so far has come down to 4,587 against 4,632 in November and 12,077 in October for the same period, according to the statistics provided by the state Health Department.

Dr Rahul Pandit, member of the state-appointed task force for the clinical management of critical patients, said that some amount of herd immunity may have been playing a role in the decline of cases, especially in densely populated areas.

“At least, in densely populated areas, we may have achieved some amount of herd immunity; this is the reason cases are not coming from those areas. No one will accept it because it is yet to be proven. However, logically, we can think that it is impossible for those living in slums to maintain social distance. Despite this, if people there are fine, then something is preventing the spread,” Dr Pandit said.

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