IIT-Kanpur study suggests COVID third wave in India may peak in early Feb

The study says that cases will start rising around December 15, 2021, and the peak of the third wave will occur on February 3, 2022

Maharashtra tops the chart with 88 cases, followed by Delhi with 67 Omicron cases. Telangana has reported 38 cases, Tamil Nadu 34, Karnataka 31, Gujarat 30, Kerala 27 and Rajasthan recorded 22 cases.

The third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India may peak by February 3, 2022, claims a modelling study by researchers at Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur.
However, the forecast is based on the assumption that India will follow the trends of rise in cases seen in many countries globally driven by the Omicron variant of coronavirus.

The yet-to-be peer-reviewed study, posted on the preprint repository MedRxiv on December 21, used a statistical tool named the Gaussian Mixture model to forecast the third wave.

In their study, the researchers used data from countries such as the US, the UK, Germany, and Russia that are already facing the third COVID-19 wave. They modelled the daily data of cases in these countries to predict the impact and timeline for the third wave in India.
The study also used the data from the first and second waves in India, considering the number of cases with respect to time.

Also read: India’s Omicron tally jumps 122 cases in 24 hours; case count stands at 358

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The model forecasts India’s third wave of COVID-19 to peak in the beginning of February 2022. The model says that cases will start rising around December 15, 2021, and the peak of the third wave will occur on February 3, 2022, they wrote in the research paper.

The authors of the study noted that the conclusions are based on the assumptions that a third wave of COVID-19 may hit the country, and will follow the trends happening around the world.

However, the researchers noted that the exact peak number of cases cannot be estimated accurately with the study as it did not consider the vaccination data of the population.

The authors noted that the vaccination campaign by the Union government is a good initiative but it will take some time to reach “100 per cent efficacy”.

“In many countries like the US, UK, Germany, Russia, the majority of the people have been vaccinated but still they are currently facing the third wave,” the authors explained. “So, India and other countries have to build up the defences and be prepared for another wave so that it is not as devastating as the earlier ones,” they added.

(With inputs from agencies)

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