Medically, no need to continue lockdown for COVID after 21-days, says Devi Shetty

He said the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 would continue to increase in India in the next two-three weeks

Shetty also praised the government for being "very, very" proactive in declaring lock-down at a very early stage, noting that Brazil is yet to take such a measure and the US took the step much later.

Favouring lifting off of the country-wide lockdown after the 21-days, eminent cardiac surgeon Devi Prasad Shetty on Thursday (April 2) said limiting enforcement only in areas reporting high incidences of COVID-19 cases would just as much help the country.

The Chairman and Executive Director of Narayana Health said, “medically speaking it would not make a big difference” if the 21-days lockdown in the entire country is continued.

“But what needs to be done is to keep testing as many people as possible and wherever you find in pockets where there is high incidence, that area should be locked-down, by doing this we can contain this (spread of Coronavirus). The whole country need not be locked down (after the 21-days lockdown),” Shetty told PTI.

He said the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 would continue to increase in India in the next two-three weeks.

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“Right now, it’s manageable,” Shetty said. He opined that the 21-day nationwide lockdown would bring down the Coronavirus mortality by at least 50 per cent.

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“When you retrospectively look back after 3-6 months, whatever would have been the actual mortality, it would be 50 per cent of what it would have been (had there been no 21-day lockdown). I can very confidently say that. The 21-days lockdown definitely made a big difference,” he added.

Shetty also praised the government for being “very, very” proactive in declaring lock-down at a very early stage, noting that Brazil is yet to take such a measure and the US took the
step much later.

“I am fairly confident that we will be able to manage (the COVID-19 crisis),” he said.

Earlier, Dr Shetty had said, India is capable of providing enough beds and has large government hospitals and medical college hospitals, all that the country now needs are young doctors, nurses and paramedics to work on ground zero.

(With inputs from agencies.)

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