COVID-19 Surge: Virus keeps changing; up and downs expected, say Experts

‘No need to panic, 99.9 positive patients are recovering within 2-4 days without hospitalization’

Srinagar, Jul 25: Amid the fresh surge in Covid-19, the experts on Monday said that it is characteristic of virus to behave differently and ups and downs are part it but there is no need to worry as 99.9 percent patients are recovering in just few days without any hospitalization.

Flu expert and President of Doctors Association of Kashmir Dr Nisar Ul Hassan told news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), that Covid-19 pandemic is in endemic stage now and it has joined many viruses which are endemic and one of them is Influenza which we see every year.

“Once the virus goes into endemic phase, the rise and fall can be seen with small changes in the virus as it keeps on changing and once there is a change, rise and fall can be expected,” he said.

Moreover, those who have got vaccinated and those who have got infection before six months or more and by then, they might have waned some immunity as most people haven’t got the booster dose.

“Some immunity remains for longer time due to which there can be contraction of the virus but due to some immunity, there is no severity among positive patients and almost all patients are recovering themselves without any hospitalization,” he said.

He said that case counting should be stopped now as it has relevance now and it is minor flu now and counting will lead to fear and anxiety among people,” he said. “Once there is increase in hospitalizations, then we have to bell the alarm but as of nothing like that.”

He said that testing in mild cases must be avoided now and quarantine only healthy patients having mild symptoms and we must go for testing only when there is severity in anyone and high risk groups and we must focus on booster doses and vaccination.

“I firmly believe that we may end up in yearly booster doses after a year or so,” he said, adding that that “ups and downs can happen as virus keeps changing.”

Meanwhile other doctors said that the number of COVID cases are seemingly on rise over the last few weeks, but the symptoms are mild and self-limiting lasting for a few days only.

The majority of affected persons don’t know if they had COVID as they never tested for it, he said, adding that despite being positive, they kept on doing their routine activities and the virus keeps on spreading.

There’s no severity of currently circulating strain as it mainly affects the upper respiratory tract and as such the hospital admissions are minimal with those having comorbidities and involvement of lungs which rarely occurs with the circulating strains of Omicron variant, he said.

Meanwhile, another doctor from GMC Srinagar told KNO that the positivity rate in J&K is increasing with each passing day and it is likely that sub lineages of omicron are behind it, however, it can be fully confirmed in genome sequencing labs

He said that it is usually mild form presenting with fever, body aches, sore throat and cough and it resolves in few days.

The variant doesn’t seem to be aggressive as the hospital admissions haven’t increased as of now, however, people must not be complacent and must use masks at least in outdoors—(KNO)