New Covid mutants can reach anywhere any time, warns govt

By Jasleen Kaur - August 10, 2021 6:08 pm

Covid 19 update: New Covid 19 mutants can reach anywhere at any time, said the Central Government on Tuesday, adding that it was monitoring Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta and Delta Plus variants.

Giving the update on the Covid 19 situation, National Centre for Disease Control Director Dr SK Singh said, "The variants of concern that we monitor are Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and Delta Plus. There are two variants under investigation - Kappa and B1617.3."

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"We were doing two kinds of surveillance to monitor variants of concern (coming from outside) and to monitor the impact of the Delta variant of Covid 19 in the country. Today, we need to look for new mutants because they can reach anywhere any time," he added.

He said the World Health Organization (WHO) came out with a strategy that the sentinel sites needed to be identified and representative samples from every district of every state be subjected to genome sequencing.

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"The WHO came out with a strategy that the sentinel sites need to be identified and representative samples from every district of every state be subjected to genome sequencing. It should be tested if there is any mutant that will cause a public impact in the time to come," said Dr Singh.

"Sentinel sites were affixed across the country and all states were asked to identify a minimum of 5 labs and 5 tertiary care hospitals and see if the sentinel sites represented samples of a representative district. Around 277 sentinel sites have been identified while 8,000 samples have been sent in July," he added.

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On Kerala's Covid situation, Dr Singh said, "A central team was sent to Kerala. First, to see how the 'test-track-treat' strategy is being implemented, second, surveillance of containment zones with contact tracing being an important factor, the third infrastructure of hospitals and fourth progress of vaccination."

-PTC News

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