Science

Non-pharma interventions significantly curb spread of Covid-19: Study

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on October 22, 2020 Published on October 22, 2020

(File Photo) Traffic police personnel prepare to block a road near the airport when the 21-day total countrywide lockdown was announced to contain the spread of Covid-19, in Chennai, March 25, 2020.   -  PTI

Such intervention helped in reducing the peak number of infections, daily infection rates, cumulative infections, and overall deaths, as per the study published in the journal PLOS ONE

Non-pharmaceutical interventions, including quarantine and social distancing have significantly helped in curbing the transmission of coronavirus, according to a study.

Such intervention helped in reducing the peak number of infections, daily infection rates, cumulative infections, and overall deaths, as per the study published in the journal PLOS ONE.

The authors said: “High compliance with voluntary quarantine - where the entire household stays home if there is a person with symptoms or risk of exposure in the household - has a significant impact on reducing the spread.”

Also read: US CDC asks people to ‘mask up’ while travelling amidst Covid-19

They added: “Shelter-in-place puts the brakes on the spread for some time, but if people go back to ‘business as usual’ after SIP, the significant impact is lost, so it needs to be followed up by voluntary quarantine and other physical distancing measures.”

Impact of precautions

The study hypothesised what could have happened in the state during the past seven and a half months without the physical distancing.

The researchers had been evaluating the data on social distancing since February 2020.

The results suggest that shelter-in-place followed by voluntary quarantine decreased peak infections to less than a third of what could have been the case if the intervention had not been followed.

According to the study, increasing shelter-in-place duration from four to five weeks yielded between 2 per cent to 9 per cent. This further led to a 3 per cent to 11 per cent decrease in cumulative infection and deaths, respectively.

“The study further highlighted and quantified the impact of how compliance with public health measures impact infectious disease spread. The takeaway message is that each of us has the power to control our health by making the right choices,” one of the authors concluded.

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Published on October 22, 2020
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