Coronavirus Delta Variant: The lockdown began in Greater Sydney on 26 June and nearly a month later, in New South Wales, about 100 new cases of Kovid-19 are being reported a day. We are seeing the virus spreading beyond the eastern suburbs as well. After this the infection spread from New South Wales to Victoria, which led to the imposition of lockdown there after South Australia.
Delta is by far the most infectious of all known forms. The original Wuhan form of the coronavirus was replaced by the more infectious D614G variant by March 2020 and was responsible for the second wave in Victoria.
After this, the alpha form appeared in the UK in September and it was more contagious. Alpha appeared to spread worldwide by the beginning of 2021 but then came the delta form. This form is mutagenic which makes it more infectious than alpha and enables it to protect against immunity from vaccines.
One study found that the delta form has twice the risk of hospitalization, ICU admission and death. Therefore, the strategy of investigating New South Wales and tracing the people who came in contact did not work against Delta.
Delta has made the job more difficult.
- In the lack of enough vaccines for everyone, controlling the epidemic requires testing and tracing all new cases and isolating them to prevent the spread of infection.
- There is a need to trace all the people who came in contact and isolate them for a certain period so that the infection does not spread further. SARS-CoV-2 is more contagious in people who do not have symptoms of the disease, so without tracing the people in contact, these people will not know that they are infected and they can infect other people as well. Along with this, it is also important to trace the people who came in contact so that you know from which person they got the infection.
- It is necessary to wear a mask.
- It is necessary to follow social distance to reduce the contact between people.
A detailed study found that the average time from coming into contact with the infected was six days in 2020 but in the case of the delta form it is four days. It has become difficult to trace the people who came in contact with it before they become infected.
So what can we do apart from lockdown every time the infection spreads? First of all we need to get vaccinated. Countries like Israel have fully vaccinated more than 60 percent of their population and there is a spread of infection from the delta form, but people are avoiding hospitalization and death.