Just When We Thought It Was Over, New Covid-19 Variant, Delta Plus Has Been Detected in South Korea

TN reports first Delta plus variant of coronavirus, a nurse from Chennai | The News Minute
source: The News Minute

We’re fully aware that we just released a report on the Delta variant that is currently arousing concern in Malaysia but in true pandemic fashion, we have more to worry about with the new and deadlier variant, the Delta plus.

While it hasn’t made its way to Malaysia yet, the Delta plus variant was detected in two cases in South Korea and 39 cases in the United Kingdom.

This new rendition of the previous Delta is said to latch onto lung cells more easily, be more resistant to therapies and is overall more transmissible than its predecessors. The ‘plus’ indicates the spike protein mutation which was found in the alpha variant from Covid-19’s infancy stages.

Other countries that have recorded the Delta plus variant include the U.S. and India.

India says Delta Plus is a 'variant of concern', 22 cases found | Coronavirus pandemic News | Al Jazeera
source: Al Jazeera

The new variant is still being researched and there are only a few samples of data that have been collected but the biggest concern is how resistant it is to vaccines.

According to Colin Angus, public health policy modeler and analyst in England, “We need more evidence to get a clear picture about any possible advantage against vaccines that Delta plus may have, but the fact that we haven’t seen it clearly outcompete delta despite having been found in several countries with high vaccination rates, suggests that any advantage can only be very small.”

As breakthrough cases start to rise even amongst the vaccinated, it highlights the importance of vaccination and how truly susceptible to the virus we are when we’re not vaccinated, especially if we have existing health conditions.

Malaysian experts suspect Covid-19 variants behind growing number of patients arriving dead in hospitals, SE Asia News & Top Stories - The Straits Times
source: Straits Times

According to Richard Novak, head of the Division of Infectious Diseases at University of Illinois Health, “The virus is not going to wait around for us to get our act together.

“We’re in danger of something that’s going to set us back.”

At the time of writing, Malaysia has broken its record of daily cases with 19,819 cases today (August 4).