A man suffering from COVID-19 receives treatment inside the emergency room of Safdarjung Hospital in New Delhi, India, on May 7, 2021.  ADNAN ABIDI / REUTERS
A man suffering from COVID-19 receives treatment inside the emergency room of Safdarjung Hospital in New Delhi, India, on May 7, 2021. ADNAN ABIDI / REUTERS

More Than 400,000 COVID Cases and More Than 4,000 Death in 24 Hours

Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Centers recorded 157.7 million global COVID-19 cases early Sunday, with 3.3 million deaths.

India reported Sunday that it had counted more than 403,000 new infections and more than 4,000 deaths in the previous 24 hours. Experts say the tolls are likely undercounted, according to VOA News.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not imposed a nationwide lockdown to help stop the spread of the coronavirus despite calls from politicians and public health officials. Some local governments have imposed lockdowns for their jurisdictions.

New Delhi has announced that it is extending its lockdown that began April 20 to May 17. The Indian capital also announced that Metro service will be suspended, starting Monday.

The southern state of Tamil Nadu said it would shift from a partial to full lockdown after neighboring Karnataka state extended its full lockdown Friday.

In an interview Saturday with AFP, Soumya Swaminathan, the World Health Organization’s chief scientist, warned that "the epidemiological features that we see in India today do indicate that it's an extremely rapidly spreading variant."

Swaminathan said the B.1.617 variant of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, was clearly a contributing factor to the catastrophe in India, her homeland.

"There have been many accelerators that are fed into this," the 62-year-old pediatrician and clinical scientist said, stressing that "a more rapidly spreading virus is one of them." She added, however, that large gatherings and a lapse in mask-wearing also played a role.

The B.1.617 variant was first discovered in India last October. The U.S. and Britain consider it a “variant of concern,” which indicates it is more dangerous than the original virus.

In addition to the number of cases and deaths, Swaminathan said another danger is the increasing likelihood of variants that could outwit vaccines.

"Variants which accumulate a lot of mutations may ultimately become resistant to the current vaccines that we have," she said.

New York doctor sends ventilators to India to help with COVID-19 surge

India released grim new daily COVID-19 figures on Sunday, reporting more than 400,000 new cases and 4,000 new deaths in what has become the world's worst surge of the coronavirus. Among those trying to help is a doctor from New York, who's sending over some of the supplies that helped his state survive its own catastrophic surge.

Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

There was a welcome sight at Mumbai International Airport tarmac as a shipment of much-needed medical aid and life-saving supplies arrived. Among them were ventilators that have been hard to come by, according to CBS News.

It's a crisis playing out across India, where desperate families are turning to oxygen clinics on the street while those in need of ventilators wait in ambulances outside overwhelmed hospitals.

"It is just like what we were dealing with last year in New York," said Dr. Ash Tewari of Mount Sinai Hospital. "Last year, we were getting all the supplies. People were coming to help us out."

Tewari is the chairman of Mount Sinai's urology department. He's helping pay it forward by sending hospitals in India some of the same ventilators Mount Sinai received at the height of New York's COVID outbreak.

Twenty-five ventilators were a part of this delivery, as were 100 sleep apnea machines with kits to convert them into ventilators.

The effort came together with the help of actor and philanthropist Anupam Kher whose philanthropic network is helping coordinate the distribution across India.

"There are people who are poor, who cannot afford ventilators, who cannot afford medical help. So I think the gesture by Dr. Tewari is going to go far," Kher told CBS News.

*****READ MORE: Covid-19 in India Daily Update: Cases rise by record 414,188; deaths swell by 3,915

India needs other countries to 'chip in' to help the country curb COVID-19 spread: Dr. Anthony Fauci

Dr. Anthony Fauci is urging countries like the United States to step up and help India curb the spread of COVID-19 cases, Business Insider reported.

Dr. Anthony Fauci. Alex Wong/Getty Images
Dr. Anthony Fauci. Alex Wong/Getty Images

The situation is dire in India as the country continues to report large surges in positive cases. Crematoriums across India are overwhelmed with bodies and people are dying as hospitals run out of oxygen.

India reported 401,993 new cases last week, a record high that no other country has breached. On Saturday, the country hit another grim milestone when it reported that more than 4,000 people died from the coronavirus.

Despite the staggering numbers, experts believe the death toll numbers are likely much higher.

Fauci, in a Sunday interview with ABC News' "This Week," said one of the ways to curb the spread is to pressure vaccine manufacturers to distribute doses to India. Vaccine manufacturers have to figure out how to "get literally hundreds of millions of doses" to India," he said.

About two weeks ago, President Joe Biden promised the US would send help to India in the form of "oxygen-related supplies, vaccine materials, and therapeutics."

While that will be helpful, India will also have to deal with the issue head-on through mass vaccinations and lockdowns, Fauci said.

"The end game of this all," he said, "is going to be to get people vaccinated."

Fauci said mass lockdowns are also a crucial step to slowing the spread of new cases.

"I have advised them in the past that you really need to do that, you've got to shut down," Fauci said. "I believe several of the Indian states have already done that. But you need to break the chain of transmission."

There are lockdowns across several states in India, but Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not announced a national lockdown.

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