Covid-19: Delta variant accounts for a third of all infections in the UAE
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Covid-19: Delta variant accounts for a third of all infections in the UAE

Covid-19: Delta variant accounts for a third of all infections in the UAE

The Alpha, Beta and Delta strains are currently the most prevalent Covid-19 mutations in the country, together accounting for 84.4 per cent of all infections

Covid-19 Vaccine Delta UAE

During a press briefing on Sunday, Dr. Farida Al Hosani, the official spokesman for the UAE health sector, said that the most prevalent strains of Covid-19 in the country currently are the Alpha (first observed in the UK), Beta (first seen in South Africa), and Delta (first reported in India). The Beta strain accounts for 39.2 per cent of all infections, followed by the Delta at 33.9 per cent, and the Alpha strain at 11.3 per cent.

With regards to the Delta mutation, she said that according to the data that health authorities in the UAE had received, the transmissibility of it has risen by about 40 to 60 per cent, and the risk of hospital admission doubles after infection with this strain compared to the Alpha strain, especially among those with pre-existing health conditions, according to state news agency WAM.

She said that a small number of the detected mutations caused changes in some characteristics of the virus, such as increasing the speed of transmission, changing the severity of the disease associated with it, or affecting the performance of vaccines, therapeutic drugs or diagnostic tools.

Dr. Farida said that the number of deaths in the country increased during the past week due to the spread of viral mutations. Among these deaths, 94 per cent were unvaccinated. She attributed the rise in deaths to the lack of commitment to preventive measures, in addition to reluctance to take vaccinations.

With regards to the country’s vaccination campaign, Dr Farida said that it has been administered to 71 per cent of the total population of the country, representing about 91.8 per cent of eligible individuals.

The total doses administered to date have reached over 15 million, with a vaccine distribution rate of 152.41 doses per 100 people.

She stated that the vaccines have proven its effectiveness in reducing infection rates, not preventing it completely. Vaccines have also successfully reduced admission rates to hospitals and intensive care and reduced the death rate.

Of the total number of individuals who have been infected, 16 per cent were vaccinated, while 84 per cent were unvaccinated. Among those who required hospitalisation, 11 per cent were vaccinated while 89 per cent were unvaccinated.

As for intensive care admissions, 92 per cent of those who required intensive care were unvaccinated, whereas vaccinated individuals accounted for only 8 per cent of the total ICU admissions.

She recommended taking the booster dose for those who completed six months after having received their vaccine, and said that it wasn’t advisable to take more doses than recommended as it may expose the recipients to unwanted health complications. Dr. Farida also noted in the press briefing that the UAE’s Alhosn application is currently working, and all users can obtain the results of their Covid-19 tests as well as their vaccination status through it.

She added that if a person undergoes a test or receives a jab, and the same isn’t displaying on app, they must contact the centre at which they were tested or administered the vaccine. These health health facilities will coordinate with the Alhosn app team to ensure that the individuals records are updated on the platform. An Alhosn call centre has been set up (800 4676) for enquiries related to the app.

She also noted that with most schools closing for the summer this week, health officials in the country were advising against travel for unvaccinated individuals. “We do not recommend traveling for those who have not taken the Covid-19 vaccine or those who have not taken all the vaccine doses for fear of further exposure to the disease and its complications. We advise travelers to avoid crowded places and adhere to wearing masks and physical distancing regardless of the procedures applied in the countries they are visiting. We also advise to wear masks continuously while using various means of transportation, including planes, cars or ships.”

As of June 27, the UAE has reported a total of 626,936 infections, including 605,618 recoveries and 1,796 deaths. These figures include 2,122 Covid-19 infections over the preceding 24 hours and four deaths over the same period.

Read: UAE reports 2,122 Covid-19 cases, 4 deaths

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