Corona Update: B1617 Covid Variant Found in India is of Global Concern, Says WHO

Story Highlights
  • WHO says the Indian variant spreads more rapidly
  • Chief scientist of WHO termed the situation in the country as “worrying”
  • The B1617 variant is the 4th variant that is termed as a “global concern” by the world health organization

New Delhi: In the wake of coronavirus cases in the country, a new covid variant has developed here that is termed the B1617 variant. It is a dreadful variant and can make the pandemic worse, says experts from the world health organization. “The B1617 virus variant that was first identified in India has been classified as a variant of interest by WHO”, said Dr. Maria Van, a technical lead at WHO. 

“Our Epi teams and our lab teams internally, there is some available information to suggest increased transmissibility of B1617, as such we are classifying this as a variant of concern at the global level”, she further added. The situation in the country is “worrying” as suggested by WHO experts and the new strain can add to the woes. It is the 4th such strain of covid virus that has been termed as a “global concern” by the WHO researchers. 

Soumya Swaminathan, WHO chief scientist said, “I would say that at this point of time, the situation is very worrying, the daily number of cases and deaths that we are seeing today in India and other countries in the Southeast area region is a big concern for us and we also realize that these are underestimates. Every country in the world, in fact, the number of cases and deaths has been underestimated to its true number”. The covid-19 figures will send jitters down the spine with over 3.20 lakh positive cases and around 4000 deaths per day even after successful vaccination programs.

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