John Hopkins University, based in the United States, disassociated itself from a controversial previous study for claiming that up to 12.5 to 24 crores of people were likely to be infected with the new coronavirus in India.
“John Hopkins University has now disassociated itself from a study that predicted a high number of victims in India due to # COVID2019india and also said that the use of its logo on the report was not allowed” , Press Information Bureau, Government of India media agency, said on Twitter.
The study called “ COVID-19 for India Updates ”, which went viral on social media last week (March 24), carried the logos of the American research organization Center For Disease Dynamics, Economics & Policy ( CDDEP) and Johns Hopkins University. It was also published on the CDDEP website.
The report says that if the coronavirus spreads without intervention, between 30 and 40 crores of Indians will likely be infected by July. However, most of these cases should be mild. According to the report, at the peak (between April and May 2020), 10 crores of Indians could be infected at the same time.
The number of coronavirus infections in India could exceed 20 crores in the next two months if preventive measures, including isolation and social distancing, are not followed, the report said. The model also predicted that COVID-19 cases could finally start to slow down or end by July or August.
He further noted that while India appears to have been successful in controlling the number of confirmed cases compared to other countries at the start of the pandemic, the country is sorely lacking in a key element in this assessment – the number of cases actually affected.
“So far, the number of people tested in India has been relatively small. In the absence of generalized tests, it is impossible to quantify the extent of” community transmission “, in other words, estimate the number of people infected outside of hospitals and healthcare. “the university researchers wrote in the report.
“Thus, our current estimates are at best underestimated for India based on data from the initial phase,” said the researchers.
Meanwhile, the University, which compiles official data on COVID-19 updates worldwide, said it had not authorized the Center for Diseases Dynamics, Economic and Policy (CDDEP) to use its logo on a Covid-19 research report on India.
Although the number of cases in India crossed the 900 mark as of March 28, the country being locked out for 21 days, the report stressed: “A national lockout is not productive and could cause serious economic damage, increase hunger and reduce the resilience of the population to manage the peak of infection. “
So far, the CDDEP has not published a statement on the University’s tweet.