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India’s coronavirus surge is getting worse by the day, and it just hit a grim new record.

The nation reported a record high of 401,993 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday. No other country has breached 400,000 daily cases.

Crematoriums across India are overwhelmed with bodies. Patients are gasping for breath and dying as hospitals run out of oxygen. The country had reported more than 300,000 new cases each day for nine consecutive days before hitting the 400,000 mark.

India also reported more than 3,500 deaths on Saturday — the fourth day in a row that death counts have surpassed 3,000. Those numbers are likely an undercount. A New York Times investigation published this week found “mounting evidence” that suggested fatalities are being “overlooked or downplayed” by the government. 

“From all the modeling we’ve done, we believe the true number of deaths is two to five times what is being reported,” Bhramar Mukherjee, an epidemiologist at the University of Michigan, told the Times.

Experts interviewed by Reuters have suggested the death toll could even be between five to 10 times higher than what is being reported. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not responded to the allegations.

“It will get worse before it gets better,” Ashish Jha, a physician and Dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, said of India’s outbreak on Twitter on Saturday.

Rapidly spreading coronavirus variants are perhaps the biggest culprit for India’s horrific new surge. But a number of other factors also contributed to their spread: massive social gatherings, a slow vaccine rollout, and a healthcare system that was woefully unprepared for the influx of patients.

“This was a collective and shocking policy failure,” Jha wrote in an op-ed in the Hindustan Times …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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