90% of Indian COVID-19 patients have mild symptoms, virus fatality now low: AIIMS Director

The fatal virulence of coronavirus has now declined and about 90 percent of the cases have mild symptoms, said Dr Randeep Guleria, Director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), according to a report by Hindustan Times.

According to Dr Guleria, the people who initially contracted the disease had serious symptoms and because they were kept in isolation, the “disease could not spread much”.

He also claimed that Indians have higher immunity since “most of us have got the BCG vaccine”. Now, according to the report, there are very few patients who are in intensive care or on ventilators.

Dr Guleria told the newspaper that while there is no community transmission of the virus in India, people need to be cautious in hot spots.

“Remdisivir can decrease the hospitalisation time, but it cannot reduce the death rate in serious patients. Hydroxychloroquine too is helpful for people with mild symptoms,” Dr Guleria said while speaking about HCQ and Remdisivir, which are being touted as drugs for COVID-19.

India, on June 2, approved emergency use of Remdisivir to treat COVID-19 patients.

Remdesivir, which is administered intravenously in hospital, is the first drug to show improvement in COVID-19 patients in formal clinical trials and is at the forefront of the battle against COVID-19, which has no approved treatment or vaccine.

Although the World Health Organisation (WHO) has paused HCQ trials due to safety concerns, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has said that HCQ doses have reduced infection risk among healthcare workers.

According to the newspaper, Dr Guleria said 12-13 cities in the country have more than 80 percent of COVID-19 cases. “If we control these hot spots, the disease will reach its peak in two to three weeks,” he said.

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Updated: June 3, 2020 — 3:22 pm

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