Nagpur: After over 20 cases of the Omicron variant were reported in India, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has warned of another wave of infections in the near future. The medical body also urged the Centre to announce ‘additional’ or booster doses for the healthcare personnel.
The newly-discovered Omicron variant has been detected in Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi and Rajasthan. A total of 23 cases have been reported till date. The IMA claimed that with the scientific evidence available and the experience noted in countries of origin, it is quite evident that the Omicron variant has high penetrability and will affect more people.
“At a time when India is limbing back to normalcy, this is a great setback. If we do not take adequate measures, we may have a massive third wave” IMA further said. The doctors and experts have claimed that the tally of the Omicron variant is bound to increase. The IMA has urged the central government to make additional vaccination doses of Covid-19 vaccine to frontline workers, healthcare personnel and even to immunocompromised individuals.
Apart from this, IIT scientist Manindra Agarwal, who has been involved in the mathematical projection of the trajectory of Covid-19 on Monday predicted that the third wave of Covid-19, mainly caused by the Omicron variant will hit India by February 2022. Agrawal added that the predicted third wave is said to be milder than the deadly second wave which killed thousands in India in April-May 2021.
“With the new variant, our current forecast is that the country could see the third wave by February but it will be milder than the second wave. So far we have seen that the severity of Omicron is not like the one seen in the Delta variant,” Agrawal told PTI.
The Omicron variant was first detected in South Africa and has been categorised as ‘variant of concern’ by the World Health Organisation. However, in what comes as a relief, no deaths have been reported due to the highly-transmissible variant.