The World Health Organization (WHO) has recently said that surging cases of the COVID19 pandemic in several parts of the world might lead to the emergence of new and more deadly variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the next couple of months. Professor Didier Houssin, who is the chairperson of the WHO Emergency COVID19 Committee, has said that the pandemic is not going to be over soon. He has said that the global increase in the number of COVID19 cases has indicated the ongoing challenges inflicted by the pandemic. The officials from the WHO have said that COVID19 cases in Africa have beaten their second wave peak in the first week of July. The death toll linked to COVID19 as well has climbed up by 40 percent. During the early stage of the pandemic, there has been only one strain of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. As the virus has started spreading across the world, it has kept on mutating and sprouting thousands of its other strains and some of these variants are more transmissible and contagious as compared to the original strain. The WHO has labeled four strains of the virus as variants of concern. The most recent variant of the virus known as the Delta variant that has been identified in India for the first time during the second wave has been spreading in more than 111 countries around the world.
Health experts have said that the Delta variant accounts for 60 percent of total COVID19 cases in the United States. The WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said that the strain is going to be the leading variant across the world very soon. Over the past week, COVID19 cases and deaths have increased across more than half of the states in the US due to the slow pace of vaccination and the continuous spread of the Delta variant. In the last week, 47 states have reported a rise in the cases as compared to two weeks earlier. The death toll has shot up in 30 states as compared to a week earlier. One of the counties in Missouri has asked for additional funding to set up an alternate care site as cases have been shooting up in the state. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is expecting a rise in the number of hospitalization as well in the next four weeks. As per the forecast of the agency, the US might witness 11000 additional hospitalizations linked to COVID19 in the next 15 to 20 days. The World Health Organization (WHO) has said that in the last week, COVID19 cases have seen a 10 percent increase worldwide. The death toll that has been reducing for nine consecutive weeks as well has shot up in the last 10 days across the world.
The officials from the WHO has said that as cases of coronavirus continue to rise around the world, new strains of the virus will continue to emerge in the future and the situation might be quite hard to control. They have said that vaccination remains the single most crucial weapon against the virus. Vaccines play an important role in disabling the virus from evolving into new variants. However, there are still many countries that do not have access to enough doses of vaccines. According to the University of Oxford’s Global Change Data Lab, only 25.8 percent of people around the world have been given one dose of a COVID19 shot. The WHO has pledged to get at least 10 percent of each country’s population vaccinated by September 2021. The global health agency has asked rich countries to share vaccine supplies with underdeveloped countries. Health experts have said that vaccination, well-informed public health, and social measures such as the use of facemasks, social distancing, and hand hygiene are the most effective strategies to fight against the virus.
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