By John Ikani
The World Health Organization has stated that the COVID-19 Delta variant has been identified in at least 85 countries, and is spreading rapidly among unvaccinated populations.
Director-General of WHO Tedros Ghebreyesus told newsmen on Friday that “as some countries ease public health and social measures, we are starting to see increases in transmission around the world.”
According to him, “new variants are expected and will continue to be reported – that’s what viruses do, they evolve – but we can prevent the emergence of variants by preventing COVID-19 transmission. It’s quite simple: more transmission, more variants. Less transmission, less variants.”
“That makes it even more urgent that we use all the tools at our disposal to prevent COVID-19 transmission: the tailored and consistent use of public health and social measures, in combination with vaccine equity.” He added.
What you should know
The Delta variant of Covid-19 has was described by Ghebreyesus
as “the most transmissible” mutation to date.
According to WHO’s Technical Lead on COVID-19, Maria Van Kerkhove, the Delta variant has proved “extremely contagious in any country it reaches.”
“The delta variant can make the epidemic curve exponentially,” Ms Kerkhove said.
But delta is not the only worrying mutation. According to the WHO expert, “there is a constellation of variants circulating,” including sub-variants, four of which are very worrying.
Limitations of vaccines and panacea
Kerkhove said “Vaccines and treatments work, but these viruses can evolve and the existing shots “may not work” over time, emphasising again that to minimise outbreaks, everyone must continue to maintain public health measures.
“One of the most important ways WHO coordinates the response to COVID-19 and other emergencies is through its global network of emergency medical teams (EMTs).