The number of active COVID-19 cases fell below 1,000 in Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday. A total of 963 persons are under treatment across the J&K. For quite some time now, the daily fresh cases remain less than or around 100-mark. In the national context also, the number of daily recoveries has overtaken the number of daily new cases. The national recovery rate in India stands at 96.91%. India’s present active caseload make up only 1.65% of the total positive cases. In the last week, India recorded one of the lowest daily new cases per million population. A number of serosurveys, where people are tested for the presence of SARS-CoV2-specific antibodies, were conducted recently. It is a reliable marker of infection and recovery. The study indicates that with the pool of recovered people, with immunity to reinfection, there might be scenarios where the total immune fraction is high enough to reduce outbreaks by large amounts.
A higher fraction of asymptomatic infections and recovery with immunity should have created pools of immune people in areas that were most affected. However, this may not yet have happened everywhere and caution must still be maintained. it is imperative to follow COVID-appropriate behaviour such as wearing masks, avoiding crowded indoor spaces. The virus might have slowed down in spread but people are still at risk even with the vaccine available. The vaccination drive is expected to keep the fresh cases shrinking but there is still some distance to travel to be relaxed.
It is important to note the important aspects of the contemporary pandemic is that an infected person can transmit the infection to others in the community in the pre-symptomatic but infectious stage. While the virus has been seen to be severe or fatal in only a few, its spread in the community happens at a much higher rate than one presumes.
It is established fact that all viruses mutate. Many mutations are insignificant and disappear. But sometimes a small change in the genetic code can give the virus an advantage in the pressure-cooker environment of natural selection.
The virus crosses an invisible bridge between people when they are in close contact. The best and only defense right now are non-pharmaceutical interventions by closing that bridge with prescribed distancing, masks, and good hygiene.