NEW DELHI

The peak stage of COVID-19 pandemic in India may arrive around mid-November, during which there could be a shortage of isolation and ICU beds, and ventilators, a new study said on Sunday.

India’s apex medical research body, the Indian Council for Medical Research, tasked Operations Research Group to conduct the study.

“The lockdown shifted the peak of the pandemic by an estimated 34 to 76 days, and helped bring down the number of infections by 69% to 97% thereby allowing time for the health care system to shore up resources and infrastructure,” it said.

“With sustained government steps at increasing the infrastructure and different pace of epidemic in different regions, the impact of unmet needs can be reduced.”

If the coverage of public health measures can be increased to 80%, the epidemic can be mitigated, it added.

India, the fourth worst-hit nation in the world, saw on Sunday its highest daily increase in virus cases. The South Asian country reported 11,929 new infections, including 311 deaths, in the past 24 hours.

The tally reached 320,922 cases, including 9,195 virus-linked deaths, according to the Health Ministry.

The government on May 30 eased the virus lockdown across the country of over 1.3 billion people. Restrictions, however, have been extended in containment zones.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Amit Shah held an important meeting to tackle the disease in Delhi.

He announced various measures for the national capital such as increasing testing three times in six days, providing 500 converted railway carriages to create 8,000 more beds for coronavirus patients, and steps for the availability of beds in private hospitals at lower rates.

After Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, Delhi is the third worst-hit state in India, and the situation seems to be going out of control.

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