NEW DELHI: Mathematical modelling done by country’s top health research body Indian Council for Medical Research has said that a crucial intervention of quarantining of at least 50 per cent symptomatic cases of COVID-19 within three days of developing symptoms could reduce the total case burden by 62 per cent in India in the best-case scenario.
The analysis titled “Prudent public health intervention strategies to control the coronavirus disease 2019 transmission in India: A mathematical model-based approach” — published in the Indian Journal of Medical Research — also said that the same intervention could reduce the peak prevalence by 89 per cent. By contrast in a “pessimistic” scenario, the projected impact on the cumulative incidence falls to two per cent and the peak prevalence by eight per cent, the paper said.
The researchers, however, that the focus of the analysis was not towards predicting the total burden of COVID-19 cases but to identify rational intervention strategies. “We modelled the potential impact of containment strategy of point-of-entry screening and a mitigation response through symptomatic screening on hypothetical COVID-19 transmission scenario in India,” said the researchers associated with the National Institute of Epidemiology under the ICMR in the paper.
“Our results suggest that in order to have an appreciable effect on delaying the establishment of transmission of COVID-19 in India, airport arrival screening will need to have near-complete capture of incoming COVID-19 cases, including asymptomatic cases.”
A researcher associated with the paper, who did not wish to be quoted, said the total case burden could not be estimated as at the time of analysis there was no community transmission in India yet but added that based on the modelling, many interventions had been adopted by the government.The analysts noted that it may be possible to interrupt the transmission of coronavirus in India, but only in the most optimistic scenarios (for reproductive factor or infectivity per person and coverage).