Indian variant in 49 countries, territories

12 Mai, 2021, 15:35 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Testing site in Nottingham city centre

But he cautioned that relatively few variant samples are being analyzed in India, making it hard to know just how unsafe B.1.617 is.

"As such, we are classifying this as a variant of concern at the global level", she said.

The variant, B.1.617, is the fourth the World Health Organization has declared a variant of global concern, along with the ones first identified in the United Kingdom, South Africa, and Brazil.

'There is some available information to suggest increased transmissibility'.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) dubbed B.1.617 a "variant of interest" - a less urgent designation - last week.

Surge testing is to start in Nottingham for two weeks after a rise in cases of the Indian variant of Covid.

Globally, one of the three sublineages of the variant that merged in India now accounts for an estimated 5% of all cases, according to Outbreak.info data.

Public Health England has divided the Indian variant into three sub-types because they aren't identical.

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Although the official figures are already staggering - more than 350,000 new infections daily this month and almost 250,000 total deaths - some experts say that the numbers are a vast undercount and estimate that India is on pace to suffer more than one million deaths by August.

The WHO has said the predominant lineage of B.1.617 was first identified in India in December, although an earlier version was spotted in October 2020. "On May 4, 2021, the B.1.617, B.1.617.1, B.1.617.2, and B.1.617.3 lineages were classified as variants of interests by CDC, in collaboration with the SIG, but variant status might escalate or deescalate based on scientific evidence".

India - a country of 1.3 billion people - is the world's second-most infected after the United States with almost 23 million Covid-19 cases, and is now recording more than 300,000 new cases and close to 4,000 deaths each day.

There have been 335 cases of B.1.617 found in the U.S.to date.

"WHO found that resurgence and acceleration of Covid-19 transmission in India had several potential contributing factors, including increase in the proportion of cases of SARS-CoV-2 variants with potentially increased transmissibility", it said.

"We need to continually monitor what other variants we may be able to detect locally, as well as monitor the spread of the variants we have already detected", De Guzman said, adding that the seafarers were isolated on their return and had both recovered.

WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that the WHO Foundation was launching a "Together for India" appeal to raise funds to purchase oxygen, medicines and protective equipment for health workers.

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