Ujjain (Madhya Pradesh): Chinese cities are currently hit by the highly transmissible Omicron strain mostly BF.7 which is the main variant spreading in Beijing and is contributing to a wider surge of infections in that country. China comparatively is more vulnerable right now possibly because of low natural immunity, poor vaccination strategy where young and healthy people were prioritised rather than older and vulnerable population, and lower vaccine efficiency. Given the current Covid-19 scenario in India, it is time to exercise prudence rather than panic, as the country is unlikely to witness a BF.7 wave due to hybrid and herd immunity protection, said Dr Naresh Purohit, advisor, National Communicable Disease Control Programme
Dr Purohit informed Free Press that there is no need for mass testing right now. The government has rightly decided to conduct random testing at the airport to keep track of the entry of any new variants here. He said that thermal screening can be done to select random members for testing. He averred that there is no need to panic as almost 90 per cent of the country’s eligible population has taken two shots of vaccines. Those who are yet to take their precautionary shot should get it soon, he emphasised.
He averred that there can be a wave only when a new variant emerges which India has not seen before. “However, proactive planning based on evidence from enhanced surveillance and genomic sequencing is needed,” he added. He stated that 97 per cent of India's eligible population have been administered the first dose while 90 per cent have taken the second as well. But, only 27 per cent of the eligible population has taken the precautionary dose.
“Indians have developed hybrid immunity that makes a person more secure against future infections with morbidity/mortality benefits” he added. He pointed out that India has the advantage due to citizens taking voluntary actions like prevention, early diagnosis and good vaccination strategy.
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