Various strains of the coronavirus continue to appear and worry experts, including the latest: the highly infectious “Delta variant” of COVID-19.
Here is a guide explaining what COVID-19’s “Delta variant” is, where it comes from, where it is spread, whether vaccines are effective against it, and how you can protect yourself.
The “Delta variant”
The strain was first named the “Delta variant” by the World Health Organization after the global health agency introduced a naming system based on Greek letters this month.
Although this is just one of many options that are spreading during a pandemic, World Health Organization officials have called it a “worry option.”
The Delta variant has also split into several sub-variants, including the one that is widespread in the United Kingdom.
Although first discovered in October in India, the Delta COVID-19 variant has spread to at least 62 countries. Hotspots for the virus have also formed in Africa and Asia.
“This is the most contagious variant of this virus we have seen in the entire pandemic,” Dr. Ashish Ja, dean of the University School of Public Health in Brown, said today. “This is what caused huge spikes in India and caused a serious increase in cases in the UK, despite the fact that they are highly vaccinated. So it’s really a problem. “
At least 6% of these cases are in the United States, according to NBC.
If you are fully vaccinated, your chances of getting a COVID-19 Delta strain are greatly reduced.
According to The Washington Post, which cites data from the United Kingdom, almost all serious cases in the country are among the unvaccinated or partially vaccinated.
Data from the National Institutes of Health, obtained from NBC, show that two doses of Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccines are effective against the Delta variant.
Two doses of Pfizer were 88% effective against the variant, while two doses of AstraZeneca were 60% effective against the variant, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Dr. Anthony Fauchi told The Washington Post Pfizer’s data will be similar to the two-time Moderna vaccine, which also uses mRNA technology.
Fauci stressed the importance of receiving both doses of the vaccine to protect against the variant, as receiving only one shot from each of the vaccines proved to be only 33% effective against the strain.
“The good news is that our vaccines seem to be doing pretty well,” Ja said. “The data that appears show that if you have been vaccinated, you will recover. It seems that vaccines really support the virus quite well. “
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