Clinical epidemiologist warns India Covid wave 'seems to be just beginning'

26 April 2021, 08:04

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

a clinical epidemiologist has warned the number of Covid cases and deaths in India could just to continue to rise for several weeks.

It comes as medical equipment from France, Britain and Germany is on the way to India as the country struggles to cope with the Covid-19 crisis.

LBC's Nick Ferrari spoke with clinical epidemiologist Dr Raghib Ali who branded scenes in the country "shocking and heartbreaking."

Dr Ali told Nick that the current situation "seems to only be the beginning of this terrible wave they are facing in India."

The epidemiologist warned that the country could continue to see rising numbers of cases and deaths for up to two weeks.

Hospitals in New Delhi and some of the worst-hit states have reported critical shortages of beds and oxygen supplies on Saturday.

Families have waited for days to cremate their loved ones at overburdened crematoriums, with many turning to makeshift facilities for last rites.

Dr Ali warned the surge may be partly down to the country relaxing restrictions too quickly.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office said the first of nine plane-loads of life-saving kit - including ventilators and oxygen concentrators - would arrive in New Delhi early on Tuesday.

The move follows discussions with the Indian government, with further consignments due be dispatched later this week.

Foreign secretary Dominic Raab said: "The aim is to provide the support that the Indians need at their hour of need, really, judging by the distressing scenes we've seen in many of the hospitals in India.

"There'll be a series of other shipments. The first one goes out today and we're in ongoing discussions with the Indian government about further things that they may or may not need.

"We want to provide them all the support because they're close friends, increasingly important partners, but also we need this kind of international collaboration if we're going to get through the pandemic.

"We're not going to be safe until we're all safe."

For the fourth straight day on Sunday, India set a global daily record for new infections, with another 349,691 confirmed cases.