HomeDiseaseCOVID-19India could have as much as half a billion COVID cases, experts...

India could have as much as half a billion COVID cases, experts estimate

Experts have warned that the number of COVID-19 infections in India could be as bad as half a billion as the country suffers through a deadly wave.

According to a report by CNN, experts fear that the actual number of infections from COVID-19 could be 30 times more than the current outbreak. Currently, India has over 17.6 million cases.

However, when adjusted with expert estimates, that brings the believed actual infections to 528 million.

Another record-breaking day

Between Tuesday and Wednesday, the country reported another high, as 362,757 more people were confirmed with the virus. That was yet another day of record-breaking infections, meaning India has broken daily record infections for almost a week running.

“It is widely known that the cases and the mortality figures are undercounted, and they have always been,” Ramanan Laxminarayan told CNN. Laxminarayan is the director of the Centre for Disease Dynamics, Policy, and Economics in New Delhi.

Only one in 30 infections recorded

He said data from last year showed that India was reporting only one in 30 infections. He also said deaths were now seriously underreported.

“This time, the mortality figures are likely serious underestimates. What we see on the grounds are many more deaths, more than the official reported counts.” He added.

Indeed, images on social media showed corpses lined up for cremation outside funeral pyres. The distressing images point to an apocalyptic situation in India, far more deadly than official counts.

Surging deaths

The news comes on the very day that India passed 200,000 COVID deaths. The new figures were 201,187, with 3,293 new deaths reported over the past 24 hours.

The number of COVID-19 reports across many countries worldwide is inaccurate, but the problem in India seems acute. This is according to Bhramar Mukherjee, a Professor of Biostatistics and Epidemiology at Michigan University, speaking to CNN.

The virus strain in India is also believed to be a double mutation. Hence, the ease and ferocity with which it is spreading. Slow vaccine rollout is also one reason for the fast spread of the virus.

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