April 16, 2021 1:29:31 am
With COVID cases surging at a rate much faster in the second wave than the first, it was being assumed that the UK variant could be responsible for increased rate of infection. PGI Director Professor Jagat Ram on Thursday said that of samples sent by the hospital to the National Centre for Diseases Control (NCDC), New Delhi, 70 per cent had the UK variant of Covid-19 and 20 per cent of the samples had 681 H mutant.
“The Department of Virology, PGI, Chandigarh had sent 60 positive samples of Covid-19 to NCDC in March. It was found that 70 per cent of the samples had UK variants, one sample was found to have double mutation. The 681H mutant of Covid was observed in 20 per cent of the samples. Majority of the samples were from Chandigarh,” he said.
The PGI director urged the public that considering the high transmission and faster spread of Covid-19 by the UK variant, it is paramount that everyone should follow Covid-appropriate behaviour by wearing masks, maintaining social distancing and a frequent use of sanitizer/hand washing, avoiding crowded places and non-essential travel. “The mutant is responsible for this explosive spread of cases, and it is a very tough situation, with our Covid hospital and Emergency full. We have to look after both the groups. The symptoms are more or less the same, with acute respiratory syndrome and pulmonary involvement seen in severe cases. The priority groups of the population should get vaccinated against Covid-19 which will help protect against this disease and reduce it intensity/severity, which will further help in breaking the chain of transmission.”
Dr Jasjeet Kaur, CMO, Panchkula, said they have not received a report for their samples, but most likely the same strain is predominant in Panchkula during this wave.
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