Popular Questions Being Asked About the Delta Plus Variant Get answers
By: Milton, Chiara
Published On: July 12, 2021
India has just started recovering after the deadly second wave of Covid-19. If this wasn’t enough, there is another huge concern. The Central Government recently announced that a new Delta Plus variant has been detected in India. Experts say that this new variant could potentially trigger the third wave of Covid-19 in India.
With greater intensity than the first, the second wave of Covid-19 posed a serious threat to health and lives of patients. Many of which were successful in getting the best medical treatment by raising the money for the same through crowdfunding. Some started fundraisers to pay hospital bills for their Mucormycosis treatment while others easily paid for their lung transplant with the help of the contributions they received. They managed to do this in a few simple steps that you can do too, right here.
What is the Delta Plus variant?
The new variant known as Delta Plus (B.1.617.2.1/(AY.1) is a mutation of the Delta strain of the Covid-19 virus (B.1.617.2 variant), the Delta strain was responsible for the deadly second wave in India.
Some scientists worry that the new Delta Plus variant, combined with other existing features of the Delta variant, could make it more transmissible. - (Source- The Indian Express)
Where has it been found?
As of June 16, at least 200 cases of the new Delta Plus variant had been found in 11 countries- Britain (36), Canada (1), India (8), Japan (15), Nepal (3), Poland (9), Portugal (22), Russia (1), Switzerland (18), Turkey (1), and the United States (83).
India reported around 56 cases of the new variant have been reported in Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Gujarat, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Orissa, Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, and Haryana. No deaths were reported yet in India.
There are many people who are still reeling under the second wave of Covid-19. They are in need of funds for medical emergencies, oxygen support, food distribution and so on. You can help them by donating to fundraisers on this page.
How dangerous is the Delta plus variant?
There is not enough data to ascertain if the Delta Plus variant is deadlier than the original Delta variant. The Delta Plus mutant strain has also acquired the K417N mutation, found in Beta variants in South Africa.
Stronger resistance to monoclonal antibody treatment:
Monoclonal antibodies are artificially created to attack the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2. Two drugs- Casirivimab and imdevimab are part of the antibody which block the ability of the virus to enter human cells. Initial reports show that the Delta Plus variant has a higher resistance to this treatment.
(Source: ET Healthworld)
The unique mutations in the Delta Plus variant means the virus can possibly escape the immune system. This may enable the Delta Plus variant to spread faster from one person to another than other variants. Experts in India are already wary of a third wave which would come sooner than expected with the emergence of the Delta Plus variant.
Are vaccines effective against this variant?
According to experts, Covid-19 vaccines have been effective against the original Delta variant. However, in some cases it was found that the Delta Plus variant has infected people who were fully vaccinated too.
A single dose of vaccine may not provide enough protection against the Delta Plus variant. Researchers in the UK found that when the Pfizer vaccine was administered, it provided an efficacy of 33% against the Delta strain and 88% after the second dose. With regard to the AstraZeneca vaccine, the efficacy for the first dose was around 33% which later went up to 60% for the second dose. (Source: Business Insider India)
The Delta Plus variant might also have a similar amount of reduction in the efficacy of the vaccine. Although, there is still not enough evidence right now to suggest that the vaccines would be ineffective against the new variant.
What can you do to protect yourself?
Practice Covid appropriate behaviour at all times, wear double masks and more importantly get yourself vaccinated as soon as possible. Vaccination is the only way to gain immunity against the infection or reduce the risk or severity of the infection.
If you are in need of funds during these times for your medical expenses or for a personal or social cause, consider starting a fundraiser. It will take only 5 minutes.
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