India and COVID-19: the task ahead

Madhulekha Bhattacharya, Madhumita Mukherjee, Shambhavi .


COVID-19 pandemic has impacted countries across the globe causing unprecedented morbidity and mortality and weakening the economic fiber of each country. India too has to face this challenge by its strengths and manage the weaknesses to get over this COVID-19 disease, which is recording an average of 30 to 40000 positive cases per day in july2020 .The factors in favor of India are the epidemiological parameters such as low case fatality rate of 2.43%, recovery rate of 66% , the young population (67 % between 15 to 64 years), and only 7% (65 years plus) population. The guidelines issued by government of India regarding ban on travel, quarantine, isolation, treatment protocols, containment zones and testing policies steering the country with low death rates. The supreme court directive to increase testing facilities is being implemented with all medical colleges and private sector given permission for testing. The “point of care test” at hot spots will unearth asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic cases and prevent transmission from them. However, lack of concept of insurance and prevention in the community, misconceptions about quarantine, economic crisis and insufficient health infrastructure are hindrances in managing the current pandemic. The dictum of prevent, test, track and treat given by Indian council of medical research chief is the path to be followed. Aided by the various digital apps for contact tracing, tele medicine for managing cases in remote areas and provision of hospital facilities for moderate and severe cases till the indigenous vaccine arrives, should be the strategy adopted by India to get over the COVID-19 pandemic.


COVID-19, Case fatality rate, Recovery rate, Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, Pandemic, Quarantine

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