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Official Gheorghita: Indian variant could become dominant; people need to get immunised

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Valeriu Gheorghiță

Head of the vaccination campaign Valeriu Gheorghita on Tuesday warned that it is "very likely" that the Delta version of the SARS-CoV-2 viral strain, from India, has all the characteristics to become a "dominant variant," saying that it's important because of that for the authorities to make sure that people who wish to do so have access to vaccination, in order to have a sufficient coverage rate to slow the spread of the virus, otherwise Romania risking a fourth wave of increased number of infections.

"The pandemic is not over, it is very obvious that there are currently four worrying viral variants, as they have been classified by the World Health Organization - the Alfa or British version, the Beta version or the South African version, Gama, the Brazilian variant, and last but not least, the Delta variant or the Indian variant. This strain has a contagiousness capacity about 50pct higher than the British variant and we know that the British variant had a contagiousness capacity of at least 30 -50pct higher than the original version in Wuhan (...). Unlike the original strain, which had a basic reproduction number between 2 and 3. So we are definitely talking about a much higher contagiousness and, unfortunately, what is happening right now in the UK shows that this variant tends to spread a lot among the population, with the most diagnosed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection being now caused by this Delta variant," Valeriu Gheorghita told a press conference held at the Victoria Palace.

The head of CNCAV underscored that there is a good part in terms of epidemiological control measures, namely that the current vaccines prove their effectiveness against this viral variant, provided that the complete vaccination schedule is carried out.

He underscored that Romania has maintained the recommendations set out in the summary of product characteristics to complete the vaccination schedule as provided for all 3 types of vaccines - 21 days for Pfizer, 28 days for Moderna and 8 weeks for Astra Zeneca - which was a wise decision given the appearance of "other mutant viral variants."

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