Fewer deaths if better prepared for 3rd COVID-19 wave: Report

New Delhi: The intensity of a COVID-19 third wave in India will be as severe as that of the second wave if any indication is to be had from what other nations have reported, SBI said in its latest 'Ecowrap' report that details the economy's performance amid the pandemic.

The bank called for priority vaccination of children and teens in the 12-18 age group, who could be the next vulnerable group.

If India is better prepared for a third wave, a fall in serious case rate will lead to less number of deaths, State Bank of India (SBI) said in its report.

"We find that if serious cases decline from 20 per cent to 5 per cent (due to better health infrastructure and rigorous vaccination) in third wave, then the number of deaths in the third wave could significantly reduce to 40,000 as compared to current deaths of more than 1.7 lakh," SBI said in the report.

"Vaccination should be the key priority, especially for children who could be the next vulnerable group. With around 15-17 crore children in the 12-18 age bracket, India should go for an advanced procurement strategy like that adopted by developed nations to inoculate this age group," the government-run bank said.