Delta more contagious and deadly, says Chuang Shuk-kwan

Hong Kong | 24 Jun 2021 6:19 pm

Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the CHP’s communicable disease branch, said the delta variant of Covid-19 is more contagious and deadly than the alpha variant, taking more time for recovery.

Hong Kong has seen seven Covid cases today - one local and six imported. All seven patients were found to be carrying the mutant L452R coronavirus strain, with the delta variant discovered from the local patient.

Chuang said according to UK and Singapore researches, the delta variant is 60 percent more contagious than the alpha variant.

“Patients infected with the delta variant of Covid will have longer infectious periods with a higher viral load, and are more likely to end up in the intensive care unit,” said Chuang.

However, she pointed out that the BioNTech vaccines were proved to be effective against the delta variant, having an efficacy rate of up to 90 percent.

“Members of the public should get vaccinated as soon as possible,” she stressed.

According to the World Health Organization, delta has now spread to 92 countries around the world. with the United Kingdom recently saw delta become the dominant strain there, surpassing its native alpha variant.

WHO officials have said there were reports that the delta variant also causes more severe symptoms, but that more research is needed to confirm those conclusions. Still, there are signs the delta strain could provoke different symptoms than other variants.

No variant has really found the combination of high transmissibility and lethality, but delta is “the most able and fastest and fittest of those viruses,” WHO officials said.

“This particular delta variant is faster, it is fitter, it will pick off the more vulnerable more efficiently than previous variants, and therefore if there are people left without vaccination, they remain even at further risk,” the official added.



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