Everything you need to know about the delta variant in Pakistan
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues across the world, public health officials are watching certain coronavirus mutations and variants that may be more contagious or deadly than the original strain.
Viruses constantly change to adapt and survive, and variants emerge when a strain has one or more mutations that differ from others.
The Delta variant of COVID-19, first reported in India and now identified in several countries across the globe, is the “most transmissible” of the variants identified so far and is spreading rapidly among unvaccinated populations, said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
Although the COVID-19 case count of Pakistan is on a downward trajectory, the Delta variant has become a pressing concern. It was reported in mid-July that at least 50% of COVID-19 cases being reported in the country are caused by the Delta variant, however, the exact spread of the Delta variant is difficult to map as Pakistan does not have the capacity to sequence coronavirus tests.
What is the Delta variant?
Delta variant is a modification of the original coronavirus discovered in late 2019. Studies suggest that the Delta variant is roughly twice more contagious than the original coronavirus.
CDC also reported that the Delta variant is “likely” to be more severe and it can partially evade antibodies created after vaccination or a coronavirus infection.
Where is the Delta variant spreading?
The Delta variant has been reported in at least 132 countries after being first identified in India. The WHO also reported that the sudden increase in coronavirus infections all across the world is mainly due to the spread of the “highly transmissible” Delta variant.
Within Asia, several countries including Bangladesh, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam have reported a sharp increase in coronavirus cases due to the Delta variant.
Do the symptoms differ for the Delta variant?
Currently, there is no concrete data that suggests symptoms of the delta variant are different from a regular coronavirus case.
The symptoms include headaches, sore throat, runny nose, fever, cough, and loss of smell and taste.
Most medical practitioners suggest that the severity of COVID-19 varies from person to person and is not entirely dependant on the type of strain the person has contracted.
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