The Department of Health has warned states that Delta plus, which is currently a variant of concern, increased transmissibility, causes stronger binding to lung cell receptors, and a potential reduction in the monoclonal antibody response.
Urging states to have more targeted and stringent measures to contain the spread of the virus, the ministry has now ordered that adequate samples of positive people must be sent to designated laboratories so that clinical epidemiological correlations can be made.
Doctors across India have warned against easing compliance with appropriate behavior for COVID.
Archana Dhawan Bajaj, director of Nurture IVF, said the Delta variant has been labeled a âvariant of concernâ by the World Health Organization (WHO) for several reasons.
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âThe Delta variant is more resistant to drugs, treatments and vaccination. Therefore, people who have been vaccinated may still be affected by this variant and may continue to develop clinical disease. Neutralizing antibodies against this post-vaccination variant appear to be nearly five times weaker in people previously vaccinated than other variants, âshe said.
Dr Bajaj added that the other major concern was the virulence of the disease after infection with this variant.
âThere is a noticeable increase in hospitalizations, intensive care admissions, mortality and morbidity for people with this variant. This variant appears to be responsible for a good number of reappearances, âshe said.
Doctors added that COVID-19, being an RNA virus, tends to mutate rapidly, so there is a need to intensify the vaccination campaign across the world.
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âSpecific vaccines against variants like the Delta variant urgently need to be synthesized or manufactured and deployed. If this variant is not checked in time, it could lead to a fierce and rapid third wave of the COVID pandemic. The Delta plus variant has helped start a new wave in the UK and parts of the US. There are concerns that it could bypass vaccine immunity, a phenomenon called immune evasion. A country like India, with its large population, is always likely to have a big effect. This strain is likely to cause a third wave, if it ever occurs. So it is important that people consider appropriate behavior for COVID, âsaid Arunesh Kumar, HOD, Paras Chest Institute and Senior Respirator, Paras Hospital, Gurugram.
With several cases detected in three states – Madhya Pradesh, Kerala and Maharashtra – the Delta plus variant and an impending third wave of coronavirus, it becomes important to strictly follow the instructions of the Ministry of Health to engage in immediate containment measures. said Piyush Goel, senior consultant – Lung and Critical Care, Columbia Asia Hospital, Palam Vihar, Gurugram.
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Dr Goel added that large-scale vaccination campaigns and their monitoring should be facilitated, as well as testing in affected districts and clusters. This must be done to ensure that “adequate samples” of positive individuals are promptly sent to the designated laboratories of the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomic Consortia (INSACOG) to conclude clinical epidemiological correlations.
The Delta plus variant has been identified and isolated in more than 10 countries and nearly 50 cases have already been seen in India, particularly in Maharashtra, which is already preparing for a third wave.
âIt looks like the third wave is going to hit Maharashtra in the next six to eight weeks. Like the last wave, which was driven by the Delta variant, there is concern that the next wave will be driven by the Delta plus variant, âsaid Shuchin Bajaj, Internal Medicine (Founding Director), Ujala Cygnus Group of Hospitals.