India’s COVID-19 cases are growing rapidly with 769,001 positive cases and 21,151 deaths, reported as of July 09, 2020.
Globally, the positive cases tally has touched 12 million, and 552,112 people died of the virus.
India reported 20,000 cases per day on average over the last two weeks.
Here is a new report from MIT that says COVID-19 cases per day in India might touch 2.87 lakh by early 2021, in the absence of a vaccine.
In the report titled ‘Estimating the global spread of COVID-19’, researchers Hazhir Rahmandad, TY Lim and John Sterman of MIT’s Sloan School of Management say India is most likely to record the world’s highest number of fresh cases by the end of 2021 winter.
If the vaccine is not developed, the global positive cases toll might go up to 24.9 crore and deaths up to 18 lakh people by the coming spring.
The research, based on the number of cases, deaths, tests and other factors, estimates the virus spread to around 84 countries covering 60 percent of the world population.
“We use a multi-country modified SEIR (Susceptible, Exposed, Infectious, Recovered) model to simultaneously estimate the transmission of COVID-19 in 84 countries. The model tracks community transmission, excluding the global travel network and instead separately estimating the date of introduction of patient zero for each country,” the study noted.
While the US is now the worst-hit nation globally with 3 million cases, researchers estimate that India will soon surpass the US.
By the end of February 2021, the US will move to second place with 95,000 cases per day, followed by South Africa (21,000), Iran (17,000 cases), and Indonesia (13,000 cases).
According to the researchers, the number of cases being reported is 12 times higher than the actual number, and deaths are 50 percent higher.
However, all nations are likely to remain below the level required for herd immunity.
“The key driver of future trajectories is the extent of distancing, better hygiene, and mask use. Communities that bring down risky contacts quickly when the case counts rise are likely to see far fewer cases in the long run,” says Hazhir Rahmandad.
According to WHO, currently 19 vaccines are under clinical evaluation stage, and hundreds are being development and testing.