India reports 1890 COVID cases: Be observant says health expert

As India sees rise in COVID cases, health expert says no need to panic; genome sequencing is a must

NEW DELHI | Updated: 26 March, 2023 10:14 am IST
Health expert calls for people to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour (TNI file photo by Sumit Kumar)

There is no need to hit the panic button. We just need to be observant, a senior health expert says as India recorded 1890 cases in last 24 hours.

In a case of concern, India recorded 1500 fresh COVID cases for the first time in 146 days on Friday.

In an exclusive interview with The New Indian Dr Suranjit Chatterjee, Senior Consultant, Internal medicine, Indraprastha Apollo hospital, New Delhi also said that genomic sequencing is a must.

“It’s been happening for the last two weeks. We were under the impression that what was happening was mainly influenza. That’s also true as I used to get them tested quite frequently and the COVID report used to be negative,” Dr Chatterjee said.

“But in the last two weeks, the number of cases has gone up. We need not panic but be observant, be careful and we need to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour,” the senior consultant said.

Union Health ministry’s COVID data shows that in the last 24 hours, 1890 new cases were recorded in the last 24 hours. With this India’s active caseload currently stands at 9433 with 910 recoveries in the last 24 hours. 1,21,147 tests conducted in the last 24 hours. India also reported seven death cases.

Talking about the sudden rise in COVID cases, Dr Chatterjee said, “We can never expect that COVID can disappear from the world. There is variation and cases shoot up but we cannot take it likely. We have to be observant and genomic sequencing has to be done so that we know about the new variant.”

“It (genome sequencing) will prepare us for further treatment and further options available. The surge at present is mild but still need to be observant about it,” Dr Chatterjee said.

In between testing has gone down significantly. And tests that were being done, showed positive for influenza virus mainly H3N2 and very few H1N1, the senior doctor observed.

With the country reporting six COVID-related deaths, Dr Chatterjee is of the view that there are not too many fatalities or hospitalisations, at least in Delhi. “But even if they are happening it is with patients having comorbidities, medical conditions or elderly people,” he said.

“COVID has taught us to wear a mask which is one good thing because this mask prevents many other respiratory infections as well. But with COVID number escalating following COVID-appropriate behaviour is a must,” Dr Chatterjee said.

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